Pacing & Professional Learning

One of the biggest concerns that we have as educators is the attention span of our learners. In a traditional lecture-based format, some lectures can span 15 minutes with activities, while others span 30 to 45 minutes and then the following day is work. Creating shorter self-paced video content allows for greater in class instruction time. This concept was implemented during the early onset of COVID, when teachers were at home and needed to provide instruction to their students. Before moving to a pseudo traditional format in class for the following year. The largest advantage is the time management that comes from having the lecture accessible all year round. This allows our learners to gain reflection time in class as well as the ability to freely question and collaborate with their peers. All examples present by Rutgers University video on YouTube. 

 Walk and talk can be seen as a  Relaxing step away from what can be seen as an overly professional environment. authentic learning happens when the learner is engaged and at times also comfortable. The classroom has always had an aura of high expectation and demand, Regardless of the classroom’s type.walk and talk can also be considered as a key collaborative component engaging learner in meaningful discussion in a normal activity. 

 Most people are still used to the stand and preached method of education. This method of instruction needs to be modeled because, people need to see it in action to understand its effect. Both as the learner and the educator must experience this flipped classroom methodology to best put it into practice in their own academic setting. The reason it is so important for the teacher to become the learner is because this is directly how to facilitate the connection with their students. 

As for me, to model this type of flipped classroom in my own academic setting would take a few steps. The main step would be prerecording my programming lessons prior to class. This would mean that any questions that are normally asked when evaluating programming concepts, will be asked the next day. Using the example video, I can see that I would have to create a classroom of collaborative discussion in greater Focus then my traditional stand and preach lecture format. However, I can see myself implementing this in the future. Prerecording my lessons prior to especially in a smaller format would be a considerable challenge. But it is something I am open to in the extremely near future. 

In a movie I watched during a very rough period in my life, I learned the value of childlike faith. In the film, “The Shack,” the main character at the end of his experience is left with an abundance of childlike faith that allows him to enjoy his life with greater purpose fulfillment and enjoyment. To become more childlike in our learning Is to embrace what it means to enjoy learning. That experimentation and the feeling that comes with trying something new are all a part of the joy of learning. Most kids see learning as a chore and an expectation required for them to survive in the world. While this is true, this has also taken away that spark of light and creativity within them. Using the example of a 2019 graduate, I recently encouraged him to get back into drawing because it is something that his own family really cooled him for, citing that he will not be able to get a job for it. It effectively ruined his desire to draw until I purchased him a sketchbook as a graduation gift for being successful. He slowly beginning to revive that part of him. Using examples like this young man, the joy of learning cannot be extinguished which unfortunately is what our modern-day system does. Keeping the joy of learning alive is the challenge of any educator. It is up to us to figure out how to revive that spark and keep that spark alive within our students. 

How do we model self-directed learning? I may not have the best answer. But I think I have an answer that works. 

Self-directed learning is about leading through example. If I simply dictated code to my students, then they would end up very bored by the end of my class. Sometimes live programming has worked. Self-directed learning is about instilling value in what you are learning as it relates to the internal motivations of the learner. Finding the bridge between the two is how you create self-motivated and by extension self-directed learners. 

References 

Andrews, T. M., Leonard, M. J., Colgrove, C. A., & Kalinowski, S. T. (2011). Active Learning Not Associated with Student Learning in a Random Sample of College Biology Courses. CBE—Life Sciences Education, 10(4), 394-405. doi:10.1187/cbe.11-07-0061 

Innovation That Sticks Case Study – OCSB: Collaborative Professional Development. (2016, May 19). Retrieved from https://youtu.be/iUusuw-xdr4 

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