Saturday, 16 February 2013


CC0 1.0
The second semester has barely sprouted. Should I have learned something already? While the outcomes for Comp. are fairly clear, the outcomes to measure my learning are not so neatly laid out, so I'll have to make them up as I go. (Perhaps you will help?) Here are some things I'd like to learn:

  1. How will the technology we use (mobile devices, apps, the internet) influence our learning?
  2. Will we begin to break down the traditional separations between classes, grade-levels, even school buildings and borders so that we can learn how we'd like to? In other words, will learning in Biology blend with writing in LA and illustration in Art? Will projects from one semester get revamped or continued in the next semester? Will students from different classes or different schools do work together?

The answers to these questions will have to wait until this semester grows bigger and branches out more. To this point I've learned that:

  • planning to be flexible is more work than planning a more controlled lesson
  • learning new apps and skills takes time. We've spent time in class experimenting and trouble-shooting, but we're learning about our technology tools. I was a bit impatient to begin using those tools, but we're making progress (our shared notes for example).
  • the smartest person in the room is...the room. Together we can do things that any one of us couldn't do alone. Our group poetry reading has already had some brilliant moments of collective discovery where we built meaning together and learned from one another. I'm loving it.

We've started well. We planted some seeds, and ideas are beginning to sprout. But, those ideas are tender and delicate. The more difficult work of weeding and watering, of writing and research, is just ahead, and our ideas won't amount to much unless we tend to them. From what I've seen so far, we're ready to roll up our sleeves and get to work.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Learning Logs: This Idea Has Wheels

A learning log is a type of journal focused on making learning more visible. Our learning logs will consist of weekly posts about what we've learned during this class together. As you develop your journals I'd like two elements to show up in each post: 1. connections to the course outcomes 2. specific  references to homework/classwork. These two details will help show your learning.

Page 416 in Writers INC lists some ideas about learning logs, including:

  • write a summary
  • argue for or against an idea
  • write what you'd still like to know about a topic
  • explain your work to a specific audience (a young child, an alien from another planet, grandpa)

You could also write about:

  • a new app or technology 
  • how you see technology fitting into class/life
  • how you learn best
  • poetry, music, writing, and viewing
  • the course outcomes
  • your latest projects
  • how you'll apply your learning in the future
  • connections between class and life outside of class
  • ...or something else

Remember to use labels! Label your learning log posts "Learning Log".