Live Learning

I can’t help it. I’m curious. I wonder a lot. My students giggle when something strikes me as interesting and I MUST discover more.

I know it takes time, and that we don’t learn because some one wants us to; we learn because we want to.

So when I explained to my husband time and again on our country walks about the hexagonal/pentagonal shapes of the basaltic columns upon which we hiked, that concept slipped in one ear and out the other. Until one day, he stopped and looked down and around at the top of the columns.

“Look,” he exclaimed. “Each of these basalt columns are shaped like a pentagon. That must be how the lava cooled.”

“Yep,” I nodded and smiled, because we learn when we are ready.

Knowing that makes it difficult to teach in a testing world where pacing calendars and interventions fill every moment of every day.

But because I know this, and because I wonder, I learn along with my students — I learn what they, and I, wonder about. We squeeze it in; I work it into the lessons. Without their wonder; they can’t learn.

So, I live learning.

And when my  granddaughter joined twitter in 2007, I joined twitter to be a good grandma and monitor her online presence. And that was the beginning of an amazing learning experience.

I met my friend, whom I’ve never met in person, Denise Krebs. We heard about Connected Educator Month and decided to put our ideas together and present!  We had learned much together and through our PLN that we wanted to share with others. We jumped into sharing, and not just lurking.

Here’s one of our trailers:

Digital Learners Extend the Conversation from Sheri Edwards on Vimeo. A second trailer is here: Give a Little Bit

and here’s the info on our presentation:

Extend the Conversation
Jump in
Be JOLLE
Join, Lurk, Learn, Extend
Build your own bytes.

tinyurl.com/extendtheconversation

Denise Krebs @mrsdkrebs
Sheri Edwards @grammasheri

It was so much fun planning it in Google Docs, on Twitter, and with Google Hangout. We hope it helped someone else jump in and connect with others in our global world. I hope to add more with the connections in #ETMOOC , extending the conversation and the network to build knowledge for others.

So, thanks to Denise, (and many others in our Google+ / Twitter PLN, I’ve continued learning through more than just “lurking.” And I’ve joined the #ETMOOC to continue that conversation, inviting others to join in, and learning more. I need the inspiration to brighten my own and my students’ test practicing days. I want my students to see how I continuously learn — wherever I am.

How about you? Have you been impacted by your personal learning network? Has it helped you jump up and out into the cloud of conversation? Have you brought that inspiration back into your classroom?

 

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  8 comments for “Live Learning

  1. Miss W.
    January 17, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    G’day Sheri and Denise,
    Taking that first step in blogging, tweeting or collaborating can be so overwhelming for many teachers who have been used to working in their own room, all alone. I have learnt so much in the last 4 years since blogging and tweeting became part of my normal everyday activities. Maybe I will meet up with you ladies at ISTE2013 in June.

    • January 18, 2013 at 7:04 am

      Hello Miss W! Yes, twitter and blogging connect us in ways that help us grow! So happy to be learning with you– you have helped so many learn as bloggers. Thank you!

  2. David Saunders
    January 17, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    “’Yep,’” I nodded and smiled, because we learn when we are ready.”

    This quote will stay with me for a while. Simple, elegant, and full of wisdom.

    • January 17, 2013 at 5:53 pm

      Thank you. I see it everyday. A student will bring up something they “just got” weeks later, or ask a question about something we have practiced for over and over — and this question from their heart and mind is what helps them learn. The student was ready to learn it. There are many kids, like me, who would just learn anything the teacher taught, but for kids who see no value in school — being ready — and providing the environment to help them be ready, is key. Thanks for reading.

  3. Joy Kirr (@JoyKirr)
    January 17, 2013 at 4:18 am

    Sheri,
    Isn’t it just utterly amazing how much in this world there is to learn? I thank people like you and Denise every day for all I’m learning this year. Keep it up!! Thanks for being a superb role model!

    • January 17, 2013 at 6:59 am

      Thanks, Joy. Yes, and it is the wonder in the world that I hope to keep in my middle school classroom, even with all the requirements from others. I am so glad we have connected. I am amazed at all you do! Thanks for stopping by.

  4. Denise Krebs
    January 17, 2013 at 2:20 am

    Sheri,
    What a great summary of our learning and connecting. I will keep the link handy.

    We have both grown from each other, haven’t we? As Angela Maiers says, “Together we are smarter.” So true. Thank you for this, my friend. I needed it today.

    Sincerely,
    Denise

    • January 17, 2013 at 7:03 am

      Hi Denise. I am swamped at school so I needed to think of how to write an introduction. We are all about learning and connecting, sharing and creating, so our work together seemed the most natural way to introduce myself. I noticed one post on “shyness” which I need to read — and the two of us could certainly add to that conversation!

      Hope your day is great today and the rest of your year. Can’t wait to see you in June… Sheri

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