After a pretty much sleepless Sunday night I began the day a little nervous about what might present itself. Juggling multi tasks at work would I be able to keep up with the emerging conversations. As a facilitator I felt a huge responsibility to be there for everyone. Unlike a traditional classroom or workspace where you meet at a given time and talk to those present, online we have a number of spaces. For BYOD4L I wanted to connect with those people already engaging in Twitter, Facebook and Google+. I wanted to ensure anyone new was made to feel welcome.
What is reflection
Moon defines reflective practice as “a set of abilities and skills, to indicate the taking of a critical stance, an orientation to problem solving or state of mind” (1999: 63). Taking this on board and looking more closely at what I was tring to achieve, was actually impossible. But what was wonderful was the realisation that I didn't have to be there for everyone. A community was emerging and along with the other wonderful BYOD4L facilitators and the participants, new connections were being made.
How to reflect
As facilitators and participants, the value of our learning journeys will be so much more valuable if shared. This blog is one of the spaces I will be doing this.
I've just been reading one of Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano's (known as Langwitches) blog posts on reflection. She talked about how she was trying to encourage teachers to let their students reflect using a variety of mediums beyond text. This is not to say that text is still not valuable but to widen the options so that individuals can try different ways in which to express themselves. I will look to enrichen my reflections and hope that you will do too. The Haiku poem in the image at the head of this blog is my starting contribution.
This is the diagram Silvia used to share just some of the different ways we can reflect.
I personally very much resonate with images as a memory trigger. Looking back on my own writing I can pinpoint a moment far more easily where there is an image. This image may be a digital photo within a blog post or it may be a doodle within my own paper notebook. Recording thoughts using video or audio and then playing them back, helps you reflect upon your reflection as you hear yourself speak.
Reflection can is often seen as a personal and private activity, however when shared can open up opportunities for dialogue and clearer understanding. Sharing can be with a peer, a tutor or perhaps a somewhat brave approach to whoever reads it.
Reflections as a facilitator on BYOD4L
As facilitators of this new open course: Bring your own devices for learning we will be encouraging participants to reflect upon their learning, capturing their thoughts in whatever medium they wish to. We hope they will share these by posting a link in our Facebook group, Google+ community orTwitter along with the course hashtag #BYOD4L. I know this will present rich opportunities for us to all to learn from and with each other.
As facilitators we also want to capture our own reflections about what our experience being involved with this exciting new open course has been like. How has it felt to be involved with a team volunteering their own time to work behind the scenes? What preparation has been going on? How has this collaboration opened our minds to new possibilities in relation to learning and teaching?
This story will be continued!
Moon, J. (1999) Reflection in Learning and Professional Development: Theory and Practice