kgitch day three of #etmooc – A Day to Play

comic bitstrips2

I was out of commission yesterday, dealing with hospitals and surgeries, so I missed a whole day of #etmooc!

Sad face.

Which means that I played catch-up, put out fires and dealt with all the little things that happened while I was out. No time for class.

Even sadder face.

So, tonight, as I read through the twitter chat (#etmchat), I was thrilled to connect with more wonderful people and added even more fun programs to my “to learn/to play” with list for use in the classroom.

Happy face!

As I finish out the evening shift, I’ve played with

testing piktochart

Which in all honesty, did not move easily. It is extremely limited with the “free module” and I actually quit because the screen was difficult to move. I’ll be looking for another program – please share if you have success with one.

My other play was, very fun. But without the download ability, I had to print screen to get the image I wanted…

comic bitstrips

Other fun programs that I see use in the classroom – for humor or for presentation:

Create a tagged photo: very cool!!

This would be so fun to use for brainstorming sessions or classroom birthdays or events and RSVPs or for teachers to share thoughts:

So many different ideas with this timeline website:

What are you seeing as you read blogs and see introductions? Let me know, I’ll go take a look.



kgitch on chatter and connections

I joined the #etmooc orientation this afternoon from my office.  Which meant that my office phone rang, people walked in asking questions and I felt torn between what was needed and what I wanted to be doing.

Apparently, my timezone will always place the class time in the midst of something else.   Ironic. Didn’t I tell you I was a multitasking type of learner?  Able to juggle and do more than one thing at a time? Yikes, this one is definitely going to stretch my powers.   If I am going to take this serious, I will have to participate from the sidelines and catch the recordings of most of this course. I’ll have to make a commitment as professional development time.

Overall, it was an introduction to the weeks that are coming, so I didn’t miss much.  Alec is fun to listen to – comfortable and engaging. The chat corner was a 100 miles an hour, and to whomever shared how to save the chat **thank you**, I’ll be doing that from now on. I was able to open all links saving them to read in the quiet hours (**love Evernote**). And lastly, I thoroughly enjoyed the drawing feature engaging the group to respond.  I’m a huge fan of the visual, allowing for the group to share creatively.

I’m curious though, how to engage and connect in that sphere? I’m much more comfortable on Twitter or commenting on blogs, but found the space today not so comfortable for engaging.

If you have a good method that works, let me know! Time for me to search the blogs, follow more twitter accounts and ask a ton of questions.

kgitch joining the conversation #etmooc

Eek! I’ve done it, I’ve joined the conversation around #etmooc.

1200 people/educators/professionals from 67 different countries are going to be a part of this course. It’s huge! Will it be worth it?


Last weekend, on Twitter there was a lot of chatter about how MOOCs (massive open online courses) were failing, their value not holding up, thought leaders calling this “dead” and reluctantly joining in “hoping” to see it’s value return. What I heard in all their opinions was that they couldn’t control what was happening (too many conversations/no one listening to instructor) or get enough data return (finished courses). Isn’t that the general concept of a MOOC, stepping out of those bonds, putting the value directly into the hands of the person learning?

One of the strongest attractions that I have to this type of learning is the fact that it is connecting, participatory and multifaceted – if you want it that way. Because you could join, listen, watch and LEARN, without ever joining the conversation. I have found that I love learning when it’s people like you and I joining in and talking. Not just the big names or “experts”, it’s those of us who actually are in the classrooms, walking the hallways, working with students, and building programs that meet their needs. We’re not waiting for the top tier to give us the information, we are connecting and learning and developing.

As for choosing this MOOC? I joined this #etmooc conversation to connect with adjuncts/professors/coordinators to learn how they integrate new methods and effectively teach. I joined because of the potential connections, the collaboration and the value for networking. I joined to listen and share. I joined to engage in learning.

So, hello to my fellow #etmooc classmates! I’m looking forward to reading your thoughts, engaging in conversations and taking new skills back to my world.


What is a MOOC?

MOOC – Massive Open Online Course:

The simplest presentations by @davecormier from 2010 – about MOOCs and Successful learning in MOOCs.

Also MOOC – How to have Success in a MOOC:

What I will be joining in and talking about:

etMOOC – Educational Technology Massive Open Online Course

  • Welcome (Jan 13-19): Welcome Event & Orientation to #etmooc
  • Topic 1 (Jan 20-Feb. 2): Connected Learning – Tools, Processes & Pedagogy
  • Topic 2 (Feb 3-16): Digital Storytelling – Multimedia, Remixes & Mashups
  • Topic 3 (Feb 17-Mar 2): Digital Literacy – Information, Memes & Attention
  • Topic 4 (Mar 3-16): The Open Movement – Open Access, OERs & Future of Ed.
  • Topic 5 (Mar 17-30): Digital Citizenship – Identity, Footprint, & Social Activism

kgitch on digital dualism

I am a proud Aunt to the children of my brothers and closest friends. They are thoughtful, creative, intuitive and constantly engaging in a vital life.  They are online. They are digital. They are attached to their smartphone/iPad/etc. It is natural to them.  The “online” engagement (Skype/FB/texting…) that I hold with them is very much real.

About a week ago, I retweeted a fantastic blog post written by a grandfather (Frank B. Withrow) after spending the holidays with his grandchildren.  He poses this thought:

 Are preschool teachers and schools ready for iPad five year old experts? The digital world belongs to them. It is their second nature.

Written with a blend of humor and bafflement, he hits it on the nail.  Read here: Are Schools Ready for Today’s Five Year Olds?

There is much argument in education in regards to students being online, using social media and taking classes online.  If you listen to the different arguments, you will find that it usually comes down to the belief that one is better than the other.  Thus one should not be used and the other is the ‘only’ way.

Digital dualism : belief that the digital world is “virtual” and the physical world “real.”

I call it balarkey!

The reality is that we can and do engage in meaningful ways, both online and offline.

In talking to teachers, Dean Shareki shared:

My struggle remains in helping people understand that our world now includes digital connections not simply as supplements to relationships but embedded and at times equal to or at least different from traditional non-mediated relationships.

Via  Overcoming Digital Dualism

Another thoughtful article, written by Nathan JurgensenThe IRL Fetish written this past summer, articulates the superior attitude of many in being “offline”, but he proposes that it is a new view – this separation of on/off, and that instead we should see them as “emeshed” .

In great part, the reason is that we have been taught to mistakenly view online as meaning not offline. The notion of the offline as real and authentic is a recent invention, corresponding with the rise of the online. If we can fix this false separation and view the digital and physical as enmeshed, we will understand that what we do while connected is inseparable from what we do when disconnected.

When I think of my nieces and nephews, I challenge education to get over it’s dualism.

Because there is no digital dualism in their eyes.

For them, this IS the real life.

Are you ready?

kgitch asks: Remember who you wanted to be?

I admit it. I was am the worst student.  Well, to teachers who only teach line by line, in order, all together – no deviation!  I’ve always found fault in the assembly line, even in elementary teaching; I would change my program to meet the need of the student. I like to think that I flipped my classroom in the 90’s before it was the catch phrase of the year.

I remember taking a Microsoft Word Beginners class, required by work in late ’90s, because I had left elementary teaching and “had no real show-able skills” and a certificate would help…  I’d been using the program for years, and shared that with the instructor when I came in, wondering if there was an assessment she could give me to move me forward. Of course, there wasn’t. Even worse? The instructor wanted everyone to follow along step by step, everyone performing the exact motions as her, the ENTIRE 5 hour class.  At the first break, I produced all the assignments in the book and asked her if she would give me the certificate early. Not sure if she was more annoyed that I challenged her plan or relieved to get me out of the classroom, she gave me the certificate and I happily left. When I look back on that class, I wonder why she didn’t ask me to help her with the students who obviously needed one on one? As a former computer instructor in job readiness, I always asked those in my classes with more experience to assist.  Sigh.

So, where was I? Oh right, I was not the ideal student… I was the person doing three things at that same time; frustrating the teachers because I turned in the assignments they wanted, in addition to doing what I wanted. Actually, what I was doing was writing. Notes, stories, poems. Thoughts, ideas, dreams. I wrote my way through long hours of school from the 5th grade all the way through my sophomore year of college.  It was during my sophomore year that one of my teachers told me that writing was not a great way to make a living and that I should really focus on getting skills to make it in the world. Sigh.

Do you remember who you wanted to be, before you found out that it wasn’t the right path, or the dream that your folks wanted, or the current hot trend in making money? I do.

Here’s some of the videos that I watched in 2012 that inspired me to remember.

You have something amazing to share:

Fear: Someone else’s ideas/work/product is MUCH better than mine, so why should I try?

Truth: What is obvious to you, AMAZING to someone else.

What would you do if money were no object?

How would you really enjoy spending your life? Talk by Alan Watts

Stop stealing dreams

We are taught to always keep something inside of us, because someone will ask for more. It will never be enough.  Example: Raise your hand as high as you can. Now raise it higher. You could, couldn’t you? Why? Seth Godin at TEDxYouth@BFS  On the future of education & what we can do about it.

RSA Animate – Changing Education Paradigms

I absolutely love the visual of this video – the drawing and the connection to Sir Ken Robinson’s speech is powerful.  Kudos!

Sir Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity?

I am honestly stunned by all the people that have NOT heard of Sir Ken Robinson, so this has been out since 2007 and you should watch it! 🙂 TedX

kgitch the journey begins

During the last year of researching, reading, watching, following and learning, I have found that there is an amazing group of people that are exploring something new in the world of education. I’m attracted to the change makers, the thinkers who challenge the tried and true. What I find is that they open my thoughts to how I want to create and educate. In a world where a new app or program or method is created each day, I am thrilled to be learning at this time. Will every new idea or technology work in my classrooms or in my work? Probably not, but I will guarantee that there will be learning involved, improvement made and a new process created because of that failure.

As I research, test, and learn, I am excited to have this forum to write and talk with others about my journey. I invite you to join me, be a part of my personal learning network – converse, tweet and share.

The Future of Learning, Networked Society – Ericsson

kgitch on blending in

Wallflower, quiet person in the back row, the silent observer….

Those words have never been used to describe me, so it’s time for me to write and get involved.

Join me as I talk education, technology, and what I call connected teaching: teaching to the new generation, teaching to my generation, teaching my mother’s generation…

It’s just me, I’ll wink every so often, so no worries!