How did you feel while you were preparing for and delivering your mini-lesson?
At this point in the course, through the blogs and discussions that have taken place, it definitely feels like a very safe and supportive learning environment and the facilitation felt like a natural extension. The course has pretty nicely established rhythm (weekend students :)) and I certainly never felt any angst or concern about facilitating the week’s activities. I am happy that we went second though… we did learn a lot from the first group’s great ideas! Thank you Chris, Aaron and Abbi.
I enjoyed our group synchronous meets (complete with a house rabbit and all) as even though asynchronous courses are my only option with a full-time job, family and farm, the social aspect of school (all learning aside :)) is really motivating to me.
As someone who does teach online in a variety of different contexts, this reminds me of the importance of our classrooms in meeting more than just academic needs, but also social and emotional needs.
What did you like most about your lesson? Your peers lessons?
I think there is a balance to be struck between having enough consistency in a course so students can clearly predict what their next step, responsibilities and expectations will be, and having enough variety in the materials to keep it interesting. I liked that these weeks offered something a little different and there was something new to look forward to without losing the structure established in the first 8 weeks of the course.
For our lesson, I really liked getting to know Tammy and Corrie a little bit better and certainly delved deeper into the week’s topic with them in order to ensure we truly understood what we were facilitating. Working through the process of integrated course design as we decided on the materials we would focus on and our learning activity deepened my own understanding of the strategies used to motivate and engage students online. If anyone is curious, this was the plan we worked through.
How could you improve on your lesson?
I think there are always ways to improve. I was disappointed that Blogger only allowed names to post for people with an account. This surprised me as it’s a tool we use at school but then again, all our students have a google school account that they work from so it simply was never an issue. I could guess who said what based on context but names would have been preferable. I did test it out before our week but my test subjects (my kids of course) all have google accounts.
What did you think of the feedback you received?
I think what we actually learned the most from was the experience of going through the first group’s facilitation and the feedback provided by our classmates. The use of Google sites, having a visual schedule, having links for easy navigation all in one place, etc. were all things we did because of the positive feedback and requests made by our classmates. The first group was creative and daring… we just tried to follow suit!
I was really pleased that there was positive feedback on the bitmojis and linking to our bios as we felt that our personalities and backgrounds were an important piece in making the facilitation feel more personal. I do think the next group (great job Michael and Gulia) took it to the next level with their personal videos though.
What was it like providing feedback to your peers?
There were so many positive things about the facilitation and it made providing feedback really easy. Michael’s video made me really think hard about what kind of constructive feedback I might be able to actually provide because the request felt very genuine and personal. It’s harder to just give something a “surface-level thought” when you know that there are specific people waiting to hear what you have to say.
The feedback was anonymous in all the groups and I can’t help but wonder if it would have been more helpful if it weren’t. I think sometimes when you know the context from which someone is providing feedback (Corrie an expert with ESL learning and Tammy with behaviour management) it could help you better understand the perspective that certain groups might have.
Currie, S. (n.d.). The FLIF facilitation process. BCcampus Open Publishing. Retrieved from https:// opentextbc.ca/flofacilitatorguide/chapter/the-flif-facilitation-process/
Uzar, H., & Alper, T. K. (2019, July 22). Be motivated and motivate: An interview with John M. Keller. E Learn Magazine. Retrieved from https://elearnmag.acm.org/archive.cfm?aid=3331178