Week 7: The Online Classroom

I have been connected to the world at large via the internet most of my working career, and this POT is just a continuation of that. Pedagogy First! is a community; but different, like Claire Major stated “community in an online class is something of a different animal that other kinds of community that we think about as teachers” I agree.

Lisa Lane’s post; she talks about how sometimes a community forms or it doesn’t regardless of whether she as instructor participate welcoming students or not, and Lisa go on to state the level of student success in the forums doesn’t seem affected by which way it goes.

Even in my own experience in college, sometimes a f2f class with the right group would get very social and we would just start working together helping each other with homework , I met my lifelong friends in class in college, but most of my classes even if we had group projects never became a community, but also that never interfered with my level of success in a course.

I always felt I succeeded in class, a low course grade for me only reflected my ability to respond to an exam, not my ability to learn and acquire knowledge. This thinking help me do very well in college.

In this POT I have a sense of community, but again like Claire Major stated , “community of a different animal”; but that does not reflect the level of information and knowledge I have acquired by participating in this POT. I’m participating in this POT for a reason, to expand my knowledge-base; so I do have a level of expectation for community as it relates to supporting community around this POT; a shared goal of participants and teacher to respect this community learning environment.

One of the things I have most appreciated in this POT is the discussions about stating the rules of engagement for your online class, how your class will operate and expectation. Pedagogy First! has given me a good example for that.

I think college online or on-ground the atmosphere should have an expectation of, you are here not because you have to be, but since you’re here you must want to expand your knowledge-base, so participate!

Pilar Hernández said… get in there with the students and engage them, I agree; but who has the biggest burden teacher or student to say if a knowledge transfer happen between a course and a student?

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9 Responses to Week 7: The Online Classroom

  1. Donna says:

    You are right, sometimes f2f classes have a “good vibe” and sometime they don’t. I am a very open professor and tend to share a lot about myself with students, this makes them feel very comfortable and they usually share things too. However, sometimes no matter how much I share, students look at me like I have 2 heads and don’t say a word! In this case, for whatever reason, the “good vibe” is gone….. I have to work twice as hard to make the connection. I wonder if this will be the same in the online environment.

    You said that you made some of your best friends in your college classes. I don’t remember making many friends inside the classroom, those bonds were always formed socially for me. But this causes me to rethink the classroom experience? Why shouldn’t students be forming everlasting bonds in our classrooms? Wouldn’t this help them to learn the subject matter? The “team” mentality goes along way…

    Look forward to discussing further with you,

    • fsquare435 says:

      I would like to see a focus to develop tools being discussed here not just for online but for all courses, the team & community mentality can go along way and the internet can broaden the way we think about learning universally; like what if I could network with students taking the same course at other universities, I could perhaps get insight on something I’m having trouble with, this could give me greater networking opportunities to expand my knowledge-base in class.

      I use community networking via the internet professional all the time, when I need a solution, or help with a problem. College is about learning how to solve problems, like through this POT we have expanded our team & community for solving a shared problem with developing online courses.

  2. Anjana says:

    I was thinking about your post and your phrase: “but most of my classes even if we had group projects never became a community, but also that never interfered with my level of success in a course.” In the university I had not felt I was in a educational community, only with a little group of students I was always working and being in contact but even if I was not this feeling I always thought in the University not only as a organization but also a community of teachers, students, other experts and social agents who work together to teach, learn and investigate. It is strange now to think about it and the importance to build a community in the online environment but I think if you are involved in a group and encouraged to participate learning, helping, sharing…etc you can get more from a course, a university or another kind of organization where you have to study or work…


  3. I simply needed to say thanks once more. I am not sure the things I might have followed in the absence of the type of advice revealed by you relating to such a question. Entirely was an absolute troublesome difficulty in my opinion, however , understanding the very professional approach you resolved that made me to weep over fulfillment. I’m just thankful for the guidance and thus hope you are aware of an amazing job your are doing educating many others via your webpage. Probably you’ve never met any of us.

  4. Norm says:

    I share your feelings about the Pedagogy First! community that we have here. Do you think its a good model for your own online classes? I don’t have a lot of experience with online classes, but I think I’d be pleased if my classes worked out like this.

    • fsquare435 says:

      Pedagogy First! is an online class teaching us how to develop an online class what better model could we have, and we are getting to experience some things from the student perspective. This is all new for me also.

  5. Laura P. says:

    It was neat to read your post and see all of your deep thinking about community. Last Spring semester, some of us discussed that very topic at some monthly flex workshops. The idea of “community,” in and of itself, can be analyzed pretty deeply. We had some great discussions and your post reminded me of them and got me thinking about this all over again. Thank you for the great post.

    • fsquare435 says:

      Thank you for your kind words; I never thought of a classroom as community before, this is
      new for me, but I can see how useful developing a share bond for the goal of learning between class mates can be very encouraging for the learning process.

      Laura, your comments to my blog post are very encouraging and make me want to stay engaged. I think most of us participating in this POT have full time jobs, it takes a little effort for me to stay connected , so feed-back from our class mates connects us to a shared experience ; I never expect comments to my post, so I get really excited when someone responds to one.

      Class as community can opens up new learning possibilities; when you really thing about it, as a student do the instructor really teach you, or do we teach ourselves.

  6. Pingback: be there or be square | Claire Major's Blog

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