EDDL5141    Michael Nauth KWL         Online Facilitation


What I Know What I Want to Know What I Have Learnt
I know my students in an f2f environment. I know their workplace environment, their rough and tough lives. They are social creatures. They like bars and sports. They don’t like to leave their comfort zone. How will they fare in an online world? What incentives can we offer to get them to switch or to even try? How do we make the transition as painless as possible? Can they/would they handle the technology? They are gamers and Youtube’rs. The e-learning facilitator wears 4 pairs of shoes.  I am comfortable with 3 pairs and I will require the services of a technical assistant. I am currently taking a synchronous online course (using Moodle) and the prof has a technical assistant present for the 1st bit of each session.  Pretty well all my students have smartphones and I catch them teaching each other how to fully use them. Tablets and Laptops are a short hop away. The MAC/PC divide is an issue.
Apprentices are accustomed to expert-centred learning, on the job and at school. They are shown what to do and they emulate their mentors. Thinking outside the box is not generally encouraged on the job. Will they take the responsibility for being in charge of their own learning? How do I get them to work together in the online environment? For them, group work is really about taking orders from the leader. We manage to coax them to work together in the classroom  and in shop. We make it a team sport. I see a parallel with the idea of creating ‘liberating structures’ online.  In Moodle, we can go into online ‘rooms’ to meet as small groups. With a bit of practice, they can get their heads together to arrive at solutions to trade problems and issues.
The apprentices are very pragmatic people. They construct, de-construct, modify, renovate, and fix things so that they work. They focus more on ‘how?’ than on ‘why?’ They want to get their licence which means they have to pass the Red Seal exam. How can I get them to ask ‘why?’ in the online venue? Questioning the authority figures – the journeyperson, the boss, the teacher, the architect, the engineer, the Building Inspector, the Building Code …. I am getting a handle on Peavey’s ‘Strategic Questionning’. I see how asking the right questions elicits a different kind of response, creates buy-in, ownership.  Getting them to focus, observe, analyze, empathize, envision, consider change, then alternatives, consequences, obstacles and then to take action. What, so what, and now what?




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