I have decided that I will be short and to the point about what I learned from this course but as usual I deviate from the original plan. I know that it is mandatory to share my reflection with others to be able to obtain my certificate. But for me this blog has become my personal dairy where experiences and emotions (now we know that the emotional aspect is crucial to include in the process of learning and sharing and teaching and facilitating. I think there is poeple who think emotions does not have a place in courses but I disagree. Emotions don’t always mean you are sad or in love, but that you are anxious, happy, enjoying the experience and many other things that help you or stop you from growing. We discussed sharing and openness and for that you must have certain qualifications: generous, involved, trusting others. Trust is very important in all relationships as well between teachers and students. Students must be able to FEEL (again an emotion) to start their journey with us, they trust us to look after their own good and belief that we are doing our best for their sake and not ours.
The first meeting we had at KI , I felt excited but gradually I felt anxious and very ignorant because suddenly I could not even connect to the internet nothing was happening. I was sitting next to a very nice person who did not know anything about me started to help me. It was at that moment that I felt this is going to be ok becasue people are helpful and then came a couple of facilitator who renforced my feeling calmness.
Then it was the first weeks where I felt it was so intense and because I did not have enough time to go through all the instructions at one point I thought I had to read everybody´s blog and all the mail and I felt I am drowning. Then came all the different websites (all are useful) and all the tools (all are interesting) and of course I am attending this course I should learn about everything until I had to confess this is not working.
So instead of giving up on the whole thing which became very overwhelming I made a document where I started to gather all the interesting tools, websites and even others presentations which I thought very interesting and I might be able to use some parts of it. Whenever I had some time I started to test the different tools and explore the other websites and catch up with the readings. It is the process of selection and elimination of what I could use in my ONL in the future. I think one should be realistic and try to adapt the learning experience to the target group (students) and in my case it was one of the webinar speakers said “baby steps” start with one thing and try to master it before moving to the next and for me this was exactly what i need to hear that it is ok to take your time to be able to reach the mountain top in one piece.
Now about my PBL group and please allow me saying MY because I felt I belonged, at ease and home. In the beginning I said to myself (I talk a lot with myself not out loud but in my mind and I think a lot of people do that) that just try to make it through this course but I did not have to. I started to look forward to our meetings and I did not shy from signing up to lead one of the topics and do the presentation testing a tool for the first time. I knew I could count on the others and the facilitators. It was a warm feeling to be able to rely on others in case you need them but first try to do your best. This is the feeling that I want the students to have from the very begining to feel included and part of the learning process.
I have a course that is running now and I already decided to test one thing giving the students a couple of options to test and it is voluntary. if you are wondering about the picture it is my son taking this amazing leap to allow his team player to score, that is collaboration and feeling confident that he will land on his feet (in this case skates) which he did. We have to dare and even if we fall there is a friend or colleague that will help us up so we try again (this picture is private).
I have met a very nice person during the first meeting who is in another PBL group but we have already met once for lunch and we keep in touch, meet again and discuss our experience from this learning experience.
As to this blog I think I am going to keep it and keep on writing about what is my next step which is to present this course at my department as everyone is very curious whenever I talk about it.
So if anyone of you who think it is interesting to read my thoughts and reflections you are most welcome to join me in this journey whenever you have time. It is always nice to have a companion.