Tag Archives: MOOCMOOC

Entering the #ETMOOC Fray

On the heels of a week spent wading through as much of Hybrid Pedagogy‘s MOOCMOOC as I could muster, I decided to jump into ETMOOC with Alec Couros. Truth be told, when it comes to MOOCs, I can’t really help myself. I am completely hooked on the MOOC phenomenon. While I am far more keen on the cMOOC variety, I am potentially going to take a flyer on an xMOOC soon, just to experience what those are all about too.

Like so many others, I have struggled to finish previous MOOC efforts. I think it took me untile the third time to really even feel like I had a handle on how to operate within one. Thus, I can seriously sympathize with all those that struggle, feel overwhelmed, or just get lost along the way.

After missing the initial Connectivism and Connective Knowledge MOOC, my first genuine MOOC effort was the next round CCK09. The whole experience was simultaneously awesome and a complete disaster. I dove in so deeply in the early going. It was as if I couldn’t help myself. It was all so new and cool and I was so fascinated by the material and the concept. I tried reading almost everything. after a few weeks, I was totally engaged and completely overwhelmed, eventually floundering entirely. Still, the hook was set. I kept trying and began to figure out how to feel reasonably successful, even completing some MOOC experiences in the traditional sense.

Since then I have tried many MOOCs with varying degrees of success. From lurking, following, many different levels of participation, always trying to stay connected what can only be called a MOOC Movement. Despite life or some other for-credit professional development classes sometimes getting in the way, I keep entering the MOOC fray. I still find it all too fun, too cool, and always get something from the experience no matter what.

With ETMOOC, I am hoping to do as much as I can, helping out where possible, and contributing to the effort whenever my schedule allows. It will no doubt be challenging, as 70 writing portfolios and semester exams are waiting for me on this month’s horizon which will need to be graded. Still, I am really excited about what Couros is going to do in this latest installment. There are already so many names I recognize, which is already motivating.

Quick Reflection: Changing Role(s) of a Teacher

Considering the emerging hybrid pedagogies, open education, and massive open online courses there is no question that relationships between teachers, students and the technologies they share are changing. On the most simplistic level, they are truly forcing a re-conception of the contemporary teacher. I am not necessarily convinced that it is necessarily a new one, but there is a definite re-envisioning happening. In a world that offers such abundance of content, teachers are no longer the purveyors of specialized knowledge. Of course they can remain that in some circumstances, but that role is no longer a given.

Generally, I believe teachers still know more than students, especially at the K-12 level, but that knowledge is no longer enough. Teachers must possess other intangible qualities to operate effectively in a world where knowledge is no longer the coin of the realm, if it ever really was.

Teachers now must be able to deliver more wisdom than content. Stephen Downes shared a rather daunting list of roles teachers play in his “The Role of the EducatorHuffington Post piece, where he shared no less than twenty-three roles (Learner, Collector, Curator, Alchemist, Programmer, Salesperson, Convener, Coordinator, Designer, Coach, Agitator, Facilitator, Tech Support, Moderator, Critic, Lecturer, Demonstrator, Mentor, Connector, Theorizer, Sharer, Evaluator, and Bureaucrat). That is quite an impressive list and one I consider often.

One step further and Alec Couros’s Networked Teacher diagram and concept highlight an array of capacities in just one of those previously mentioned roles. Certinly there is some overlap, but the diagram is a granular look at the role of Connector, to be sure.

I think it is safe to say that the expectation is that teachers should provide what is needed. Consequently, teachers must be more things to more people than maybe ever before. The complexity of the job has multiplied.

As result, the relationships between teachers, students, and technologies they share have grown more complex. The roles that were believed to be settled are all again subject to interrogation.

For me, an educator or teacher must be a master student or learner. One who walks the walk, always learning, always curious, always chasing mastery, and leads by example. Truth be told, that is the only way I know, at the moment, how to maintain any kind of anchor in these evolving relationships.

Learning I Value: A Video Product & Process

As part of MOOCMOOC one of the tasks was to make a video about the kind of learning we value most. It took a longer than I hoped for me to be able to do it, but I still wanted to do it, regardless. I reframed things a little, although that is kind of the point often, now isn’t it?

I had to steal minutes here and there to put it together, but once I was able to get a good run at the work things started to come together quickly. While the task allowed for more time, keeping things short and simple is always a challenge. I was trying to cut it down to a single minute but that would have actually taken longer, and I didn’t want any more delays.

In the spirit of another MOOC, DS106, here is the method behind the making. Made all with an iPad, tried playing around here a little. I started just kind of playing around and sketching some ideas in the app Paper 53, just thinking really. While playing, it occurred to me that that rough, sketched look could work on its own.

From there it was a matter of shooting a little bit of footage. I opted for some quick and dirty B-Roll type stuff that just came to mind. Being primarily for the MOOCMOOC community of online collaborators, it seemed appropriate to I include myself with a basic A-Roll talking head shot.

Lately, I have been opting for the app Pinnacle, formerly Avid Studio, to edit video over iMovie. Using Pinnacle allows for dropping in a separate audio track for narration over the B-Roll with relative ease. It is a small but significant feature that iMovie does not have.

Finally, since I mention jazz, metaphorically, it seemed almost necessary that I drop some in to score a portion. For speed sake and because my iPad’s memory is practically full, rather than download something and try to cut it, made something quick in GarageBand. It is kind of amazing how someone with little to no musical talent, like myself, can string together a handful of instrumental loops, tinker a bit, and create something that isn’t half bad.

The real trick is getting the audio out of GarageBand and into Pinnacle. As expected, Apple doesn’t necessarily play well with others, especially if they have a competing product. So it is a couple of touches to export audio from GarageBand into iMovie, which is actually what I did. Then exporting the audio from iMovie, unfortunately as a video file, allowed me to kick it into the Camera Roll, where I could easily pull it into Pinnacle. At that point, I could use it as just another audio track. A little fine tuning and I had my own original score. A minor workaround that I thought was worth sharing.