Connected Learning in a Connected Age, oh how convenient?!
We live in an age, where connectivity is integrated within everything. You can count the number of steps you take everyday using a gadget that reports to your phone. In fact, you can even count steps with your own phone. Connectivity in general is being in touch with the world at the tips of your fingers, very conveniently. This could be emailing your friends, or this could be googling a certain concept that lacks clarity.
On the other hand, learning is something we are accustomed to do, since the day we’re born. We learn some things, because it’s cool. And we go to school, either because it’s fun, or because we’re forced to. However, in order to have a career in something, we either have to have enough motivation to learn it, or be tortured to do it. Sometimes the motivation comes from liking a particular subject area and enjoying it. Sometimes it comes from a good teacher, who had great passion for a certain subject area, and was able to transmit it to his students. Sometimes, it’s a teacher and her passion for the success and well-being of her students. Other times, people are motivated to learn something to make money.
Connected-learning is allowing students to have access to whatever they would desire to learn, through proper resources and through the support necessary. This includes schools that have further resources for both their talented students and those with disabilities. At the same time, it is necessary to allow students to experiment with different learning methods, and have hands-on labs that they need to help them excel in their fields of study.
One important thing to keep in mind, in a connected learning perspective, is that people learn in different ways. Many times, people use different senses to learn. Some people learn things the most when they use their vision, or when they see something. At the same time, there are others who learn better by hearing someone explain something. There are others who learn well, by physically putting something together or trying it using their hands. Because of this, in a connected learning atmosphere, it is necessary to help students learn in the most efficient manner for them. This will help them enjoy the experience, and learn better.
In a connected learning atmosphere, students would have the ability to both participate in a classroom and in a virtual classroom, for the necessary pedagogy needed. Students can leverage the best within them, and learn in the most efficient manner with the best resources available. Students can feel in control of their education. Students can work hard, and excel. Finances shouldn’t be a cap to a students resources. There should be other ways to get where one wishes, through scholarships, and good grades.
Connected learning is having aspirations, and pursuing them. When one follows their dreams and aspirations despite all road-blocks available, they are truly in a connected learning atmosphere.