It’s. Oh. So quiet Shhh, shhh
It’s. Oh. So still Shhh, shhh
You’re all alone Shhh, shhh
And so peaceful until…
Lyrics from the song It´s Oh so quiet by Björk
Often for things to happen it´s all about the timing and every once in a while the timing is right.
I accidentally noticed a post about ONL171 made by Alastair Creelman at our University intranet and decided in a spur to jump on the train. Not once did I regret that decision and now ten weeks have passed in a blink of an eye. It feels like I´ve been inside a bubble and now are about to step back into the world again.
Two weeks have passed since our last webinar and the lyrics above represented the way I feel after leaving the course. Without our weekly webinars with the PBL-group, without the tweetchats and the course events it is Oh so quiet!
My ONL171 experience has been challenging in many ways but also greatly rewarding and now I´m feeling a bit in love with process. I decided from the start that my motto should be Why not? Why not try blogging, why not try tweeting, why not putting myself and my personality out there, and sharing my ideas and thoughts with others. It was super scary writing my first blog post and using Twitter for the first time – but I did it and now I can´t wait to participate in another tweetchat.
ONL171 offers learning on many levels. The topics of course, they are brilliantly chosen and organized by the course team. However the outcome of the course is also about group development, personal development and learning about the learning process. The last became very obvious in topic 3 and 4.
But what struck me the most when reflecting on the course was the collaborative process. Collaborative work is more about learning together rather than finishing a task. The greatest learning during the course took place in the webinars, in the interaction with the members of my PBL-group. That is where it all came together and also where I felt in charge of my own learning process. I am eager to learn more about Student-centered learning and personalized learning and I truly believe that we need to move towards that kind of learning environments.
During the group work, at the same time as we were learning the group changed and a parallel process of group development took place. It is something you need to be aware of as an educator since it affects learning. This is especially true if the course is based on the PBL method. Students will affect each other’s possibilities to learn and our obligation is to create the best learning environment for them regardless of what they know prior to the course. It is not about passing on knowledge or giving them the truth. It is about giving them the tools to prosper individually and collaboratively. The role of the educator is to facilitate that learning experience. That is exactly how I felt that our facilitators worked during ONL171.
It was a privilege to have facilitators who themselves had experienced the course as previous participants. They could relate to the stress, anxiety, frustration, frienship and joy that we all experienced during the course. It felt reassuring to know that they were standing by our side always ready to jump in when we needed them but also they helped us to move forward when we tended to get stuck in discussions. A great facilitator, as the ones leading our group, PBL7, knows when to stay in the background and when to step in. That is a very tricky act of balance and it takes practice to learn.
So, when I´m now looking at the course in the rearview mirror I´ve come to the conclusion that it´s my responsibility to make some noise and engage if I want the quietness to stop. Holding on to the network and keeping in contact with my new found friends all over the world. I want to end this last post by saying thank you to all the group members of PBL7 – ONL171. I´ve thoroughly enjoyed this ride together with you. I´ve learned so much from all of you and I hope that I´ve contributed to your learning as well. Also thank you to Sonja and Malin for you extraordinary support and engagement in our group. I will miss all of you!
Are you thinking whether or not to sign up for ONL172 – don´t think twice, just join. You will have an extraordinary experience.