EDDL 5151 Week 6, Activity #2 Michael
Lisa Nielsen describes herself as someone who found school to be boring and irrelevant and that again shows how different our students are from each other and how important it is that we take several different approaches to our teaching. My own experience was quite the opposite – I thoroughly enjoyed school and I found myself in classes that were interesting and challenging. I was happiest when I was able to solve Math problems that stumped my classmates and even the teacher. I enjoyed the social aspects of interaction in the classroom and on the sports field. After spending my early high school years in an all-boys college in Guyana, I finished my time in Canada with girls in my classes. For me school was never boring, though sometimes I might have considered it irrelevant.
Blogging is new for me, and sometimes unsettling. I have been ‘schooled’ to expect that only the teacher saw my work, and critiqued it. Now everyone sees and reads what I write and produce and I feel vulnerable. I am in another cohort with 19 other adults and I suggested that we post our final papers to a secure site so that we could all benefit from each other’s insights. The suggestion seemed to be welcomed gladly, but only a few have posted.
I think that in my classes there will always be some who feel that their work is private and who fear criticism, especially from peers. The idea of publishing their work so that others could see (and maybe mock) would not sit well with them. Academic work is not in their comfort zone. Where they are most comfortable is when they design an ornamental roof or a set of stairs and then build it and have their peers comment on it. They are unsure of their written work and they would rarely be required to ‘publish’ anything in their field of work. But they know that their practical work will always be critiqued, by their co-workers, their bosses, and the clients. When they come to school, they want to improve their workmanship in scope and detail and they welcome the input of others. So in a way I guess they are ‘publicizing’ their work.
I can identify with feeling vulnerable about publishing – definitely how I have felt even with this blog. During the job action here, I have written some things, but have been very hesitant to “put them out there” for the public. Eventually I posted 2 items on slideshare, linked one of them in twitter, sent a letter to MLAs, and sent another to local newspapers (which was published)… but still am feeling hesitant about it all. I feel even more vulnerable when we’re asked to do audio or video, although am more comfortable than I was a year ago : )