Last week in #eci833 we began our course with a discussion on #edtech and ventured into the philosophical and historical aspects in regards to technology in education. During this past week’s discussion our main focus was on the theories of knowledge and looking at how our learning can influence our own teaching philosophies and classroom practices.
When looking at my own teaching beliefs, I can already see evidence of a shift in my 13 year teaching career and my student’s ways of learning has dramatically shifted. When looking at the theories of knowledge, it is evident that technology in the classroom setting has literally exploded as stated in the article; Behaviorism, Cognitivism, and Constructivism by Peggy Ertmer and Timothy Newby.
As an educator it is always important to understand where and with whom do we learn, how is knowledge stored and accessed, and how has this knowledge changed over time. For example years ago, if I wanted to do research, I needed to do my research at the library with books and encyclopedia’s as my resources. The internet was still coming about when the modem for the internet was as slow as can be and not yet seen as a valuable tool.
Today my students have easy and great assess to knowledge. This knowledge is constant from their very own finger tips via mobile devices and the internet. As stated in the Ertmer and Newby’s article (2013) the learning is now being “reconceptualised” as a constant conversation with the outside world via other educators and other learners. This learning is constantly being facilitated and supported via the internet and of course the learning is constantly changing.
The constructivist theories like connectivism and constructivism are the main teaching methods and focuses in today’s classrooms. Collaboration learning, project based learning and problem solving learning is being supported via the internet and computers. This learning is very motivational for the learner as it is interactive and the learning allows immediate and direct access to information. Because of this, today it is now expected that the learner know of these new 21st century proficiencies when they enter Post-secondary and the workplace.
It is understood that learning experiences in the classroom have forever changed and will continue to do so. The educator will have to keep up to date on new learning in the educational setting to keep up with theirs students constant knowledge that is ever changing.
One way to for teachers to have access to new knowledge is to access and participate in communities of practice. These social engagements are great for collaboration and learning. A tool that I have always found useful is Twitter where I can connect with other French Immersion and Spanish teachers #spanishteachers. It’s an area where I can collaborate and share resources on a daily basis. Connection is key for personal growth and learning.
As educators it is always important to ensure that our beliefs about learning and knowledge need to sync with our strategies for learning practices. Learning outcomes must align with our knowledge and the instructional design of our classrooms.
What are your thoughts on this? Which theory (theories) did you prefer or connect with the most?