CCK08: Week 11 End of Term Feeling?

My post early last week was written before George’s CCK08 week 11 video became available. I noted George’s discussion about ‘spaces of learning’ in relation to instructional design specifically and more generally in relation to models of schooling. I wondered if it takes some time for an eco system to emerge and whether there are very special times for change (just like the year 1859, for example). (Later in the week Jenny and John picked up the discussion of physical spaces for learning.)
In this post I collate some themes from the penultimate week of the course.
I was pleased that end of term has unearthed a most wonderful example of ‘a dingo ate my homework’ plea (that included a further impetus on ANT for me.) Tom wrote about ‘the end is nigh’, His post started with this observation ” I will admit I am tired, this course plus my other responsibilities has been at times a little too much, so I feel it is time to reflect on the course and hopefully myself.” Fleep posted a delightful item at the end of the week with a memorable first paragraph “Between the crazy workload for Fall Quarter, being out of town for conferences, and a bout with the Martian Death Flu, I confess to having fallen completely off the CCK08 and CCK08SL bandwagon. I didn’t just fall off, I think it ran me over on its way out of town.”
Early in the week, Stephen linked to Steve Egan’s post on ‘keeping people involved’ in on-line communities (in OLDaily 17 November) and to another post about sharing inside and outside the classroom. I thought both posts were timely reminders of the energy required to sustain communities particularly as end of term euphoria strikes. The Daily provided a link to Diego Leal’s discussions about EduCamps in Colombia to provide more food for thought about organising communities of practice.
Google Alerts and the WordPress Tag Surfer brought me to a number of assignment three posts. Bradley posted his assignment and I was delighted to read the final sentence of his post “And I the CCK08 student, may become the teacher much faster than I thought.” Adrian posted his assignment too and concluded that “Depth of learning arises from providing learners with the time and resources to engage with material extensively. …And it means trusting that we do not have all the answers.” Jon‘s paper concludes in part with these sentiments “it is time to take responsibility for the power that teachers have. Once the power is recognized, begin to understand how this classroom can be used to not only teach the curriculum that is required, but to do it in a way that reflects the ability to question and question intelligently.” (Janet made this very strong statement a few days earlier: “These powerful opportunities risk being trumped by the governance of our infrastructure. There must be a way to move forward with a sense of due care and positive engagement, not just by  learners but also by the systems and communities which enable them.”) Jenny posted her discussion this about networks and teachers “I think we need teachers and preferably teachers who understand the power of learning in networks.” (The title of her post I don’t know what I don’t know prompted me to think about the foresight of Joseph Bazalgette.)
Viplav posted about paper three early in the week and later in the week invited peer review of his work. Wendy posted her paper and concluded that “Success (in education) will depend on our ability to change our role from all-knowing teacher to network learning guide.” Frances added to this theme with her post about education in which she concludes that “I remain an optimist who believes that a ‘good’ education can offer the chance of empowering individuals to influence the power relations within which they may struggle, as well as  expanding their knowledge networks.” Shel explored the possibilities for change  in her paper posted at the end of the week.
A delightful treat this week was being given access to the It’s Elementary #26 recorded discussion of CCK08. It was great to hear  Maria, Alice, Jose, Lisa, Bradley and Wendy talk about their experiences (it was interesting to hear Maria typing away in the background and wondering what was going on in the chat room!). Dave Cormier joined the conversation later too.
I would have been interested to join the Spannish SL session Stephen alerted me to through The Daily. (Maru and Delores posted about this event.) I did access Stephen’s paper on the future of on-line learning (ten years on). Once again I marvelled at Stephen’s synoptic vision. What a decade! This YouTube video underscored that! This latter post sparked a number of responses including Jenni‘s, Mike‘s and Jenny‘s.
Lani discussed her understanding of the secondary role technology plays in learning. She observes that “Unless the learning and thinking, the life of the mind and the processes of creation, remain at the center and everything else we do is in its service, then its all a bunch of noise.”  I thought Carmen‘s post on listening slowly (see The Daily post about this) was an excellent post mate for Lani. It was interesting to read Sarah‘s post about the impact of CCK08 on her teaching. She notes that “that teaching isn’t just about providing content, but facilitating the means for students to connect with each other so they can learn from the content together.” She outlines a number of roles a teacher can take (including steward, curator and jack of all trades). In a subsequent post Sarah makes some great points about connectivism and serendipity. Jenny‘s post raises some interesting questions about digital literacy and connectivism “What are the literacy skills of connectivity and are these simply digital literacy skills or do we need to make a distinction?”
Heli‘s post is a great call to join each other and share our beautiful learning spaces and our learning experiences as Andreas did. It is a reminder too what a global experience CCK08 has been. Steve points out that “In fact, it is such a small world, that I now have a real problem trying to keep up with all the friends I have made all over the world. The problem is time!” Lisa observes that “I think after this class is over, the blogs I’ll come back to, the people I want to know better, may not be the ones whose work stretches my intellect or changes my approach to work, although those were the connections I initially hoped to make.” (Her subsequent post about maps prompted me to think about my woeful contribution to this part of the course. I have been a verbaliser rather than a visualiser! Ariel and Grant posted their maps too.) Polsterf noted “the path forward appears in the connected conversations – that you make a difference by what you do, the example you set and by your own contributions within a connected community – no matter how small or seemingly insignificant. Your persistent participation in the dialogue will make a difference.” I took Matthias‘s post to be an excellent example of this persistence. He observes that “the most powerful but hardest to describe mechanism is what happens when an idea or some microcontent strikes a chord or resonates with someone else, and when that other person’s reaction, in turn, influences the first person’s conceptual network.”
There was some interesting Web 2.0 discussion (wiki and this recording) prompted by The DailyMike posted about his presentation on CCK08 to the Open Education Workshop. His follow up video is a must see! (No guitar but a bouncing baby boy.) John continued with his enormous output of thoughts and support.
George‘s post about the humanity of the issues raised in CCK08 was touched by his personal sadness and loss. At the end of this phase of CCK08 I do believe our connections have celebrated the personal. Rom Harre once wrote that “we should treat people as if they are human”. It reminds me too that we are not an island .., that we can reach each other. Heli‘s post tells me just how important this work is … “I am shy, I am not a talkative person even in using my mother tongue and this is my first blog in English. I know I cannot network globally in Finnish…”


  1. I have to be honest that I didn’t keep up with things half as much as I wanted, but what is fabulous is the thought that all the work, thoughts and resources are ‘out there’ for me to peruse in my own time in the upcoming future. Maybe a summer job.

  2. Merry Xmas to you Keith and all others!
    I am beginning my Christmas Holiday studies now and read my favourite blogs. I begun Keith’s blog from this post and will read all posts sent after this.
    You really worked in week 11 when gathering these all thoughts: you handled themas too, not only people.
    Now I am curious to learn more from you, your posts! Thanks forward


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