25 Hour Learning Challenge

Week 5: Reflection

Your achievements – What were your successes?  Where did you fall short?  What did you accomplish that surprised you?

I had many “aha” moments mostly relating to the amount of purposeful reflection that I accomplished. I realized that I need to train myself to reflect to identify what’s working and what can be better. Being a mother of 4 and both my husband and I working full time maintaining a complete thought is an achievement itself, but involving my family in my challenge helped me to reflect with them, ask them questions and bounce my ideas off of them. I made it work for me and my family, a truly insightful experience.

Your experience as a learner – What was successful about this learning experience for you?  What did you find motivating or rewarding?  What did you find frustrating or discouraging?

As a learner, I needed to get over my excuses, (legitimate ones of course) I needed and still do, the will power and stamina to maintain my goal and finish strong. I seem to lack follow through, but I did realize that I need a set schedule otherwise, the excuses begin to pile up. I guess being able to identify that is a success.

Your process as a learner – What resources did you use to support your learning?  What helped you most as a learner?   How did participatory learning, creativity, digital literacies, and collaboration support your learning process?

I relied heavily on my family to support me and be my workout partners, as well as my husband to be my trainer. Although, he pushes me too hard, so I secretly used my kids as a buffer. What helped me most was to have a set schedule and route. I needed to know the day, start time and where in order to mentally prepare myself and to avoid distractions. The use of the RunKeeper app and reflecting on my colleagues challenge helped to motivate me during my challenge as well. Reading Peggy Var’s blog about her running challenge inspired me to choose running as well. I was undecided, but after reading her goals and plans that helped me to make up my mind. I think I could have been more diligent on purposeful collaboration.

Implications for instructional practice – What are the implications of your learning experience for your work in the classroom?  How can you organize teaching and learning to more fully engage students in a participatory learning process?

Some implications for work in the classroom are to incorporate more purposeful student reflection and student choice. Some ways I can organize teaching and learning to more fully engage students are to include project based learning and student initiated challenges similar to our 25 hour learning challenge. This process has allowed me to identify how I learn as well as, provide a process for me to do so. How powerful would that be if I could do the same for my students, learning social studies or any content would be a breeze.

Implications for teaching 21st century literacies – What literacy skills were required for your to fully engage in participatory learning? How can you design literacy instruction to ensure that students are prepared to more fully engage in participatory learning practices now and in the future?

What allowed me to fully engage in this challenge was the incorporation of reading, writing, speaking, media, technology and collaboration, oh my!  The integration of these skills were seemingless, yet fulfilling. In order to design instruction that would facilitate these skills I need to constantly refer to, better yet ingrain these two charts into my thinking and lesson planning. The use of Better Answers and 8 Things to look for in Today’s Classroom is an ideal start. A simple checklist when lesson planning or giving students voice in what they learn in the classroom with specific prompts will lead to full engagement and empowerment.

george-couros-2.png (533×674)george-couros-8-classroom-look-fors.jpg (625×469)

Week 1 #25hourlearningchallenge #edcs480

25 hour learning what??? That’s right, I need to choose a skill, talent or activity to learn over the next four weeks and document my learning on social media. Hmmmm, so many choices…stand up paddle board, sewing, baking??? But, wait! When will I have the time, do I have the money? Reality is my dilema. As a mother of 4, travelling over 40 miles to work 5 days a week what can I logically and effectively particpate in, have fun and not “break my bank”? Eureka, I’ve think I’m on to something… a sport! I love to play sports, you name it I’ll try it. But which sport… ultimate frisbee because it’s played at the school I work at, but who wants to get sweaty, then have to analyze data. Pilates? Who am I kidding, between kids soccer practice 3 times a week and my son’s football games on the weekend when will I have time? Okay, when do I have the time? During the kid’s soccer practice? Yes, that will work! Now, what will I do? Talking it over with my husband and he suggests running?! The thing I need to do the most, but like the least! Who would have known it would take a learning challenge assignment for my Computers in Education course to get me off my okole and running! (and my supportive husband)

img_2713.jpg (436×445)

My target goal will be to consistenly run one mile AND increase my time. I will run on a measured trail and use a stop watch to track my time 3 days a week (during my kids soccer practice, did I say that already?!) and will document on a spreadsheet. My husband will be my training partner/coach/supporter. Hopefully, we will not need marriage couseling after this, but at least we will be in shape right? Looking forward to this learning challenge and pushing myself to be better. Let’s do this!!!

788894e86e2134b63935bcb352ec6fda.jpg (500×350)