This week has been absolutely crazy!! At least I got the post done for this class on time.
Amy posted on my blog about feeling a connection. This really hit home. It made me think about this school year and last. I feel challenged because our staff doesn't seem to completely gel. It's not terrible but it doesn't seem like my first two years. It makes me want to take a step back. Then the students ask me about afterschool activities and are super excited. This makes me reconsider stopping activities. I know if I don't do it no one else will and the students will not have the opportunity. I do what I do for them. It is a great reminder. Just today my junior runner told me I needed to coach him next year otherwise he would suck. It really pulls at my heart and I feel connected. This is the reason I have been able to teach in rural Alaska for 5 years.
Bridget talked about how using online tools we are constantly creating connections with others. I find this to be so true. I can't think of a time when I don't use online to connect or maintain some sort of human interaction. Even when I make lesson plans I use google to help me out. My favorite phase is "just Google it." I think the bigger dilemma is how to make meaningful connections online and how to create a group that forms knowledge. So many connections I make online are mindless.
Theresa post a quote that really got my attention as well. “Indeed, one of the major breakthroughs to emerge was a growing acknowledgment that online learning, with attention to pedagogical design, could be not only as good as face-to-face classroom education but better” (Harasim 2012). I wasn't sure this could be true just as she stated. Then I realized how different each teacher is and that there can be good and bad teachers. If you have the right person to teach they could create an online environment that is more conducive to learning than someone else who creates a different learning environment in a face-to-face classroom. There is just so much variety in education. This is not necessarily a bad thing as long as best practices are used.
Even though I had not heard of CoPs before this week they are very familiar to me. I just didn't realize there was a specific name for them.