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An E-Learning Blog

Grilled Cheese is not the Answer

I’ve got a new teaching position this year, folks. Last year, my world was e-learning. I spent hours and hours online, creating things online, learning new online techniques, failing, winning, suffering, and celebrating. It was awesome.

This year I’m at an alternative school in a small town. I have 10 students who look to me to create a safe, inclusive space (that also provides them with food). We eat a lot of grilled cheese sandwiches at lunch time.

It’s really interesting to go back to face-to-face interaction with students after a year of meeting with them in a virtual environment only. I have to monitor them. I have to get them to sit down. I have to go and retrieve them from the smoking yard. So far, we’ve had no serious meltdowns, although we did have a scary 7 minutes the other day when some of them tried to murder a hornet.

The biggest challenge for me this year is motivation. These are nice kids, and they are lovely human beings. They’re polite and reasonable. They just don’t really want to do any sort of school work, or things I disguise as school work. (I tried to get them to build a pirate ship, and we decorated cupcakes). We’re reading a pretty good book right now, and they LOVE to be read to.

I wonder if the secret is reading all day? Any suggestions, folks? There’s got to be more to it than grilled cheese.

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When you get too busy to be innovative…

Does this ever happen to you? You work hard to flesh out new ideas, and they start rolling. You think you’re being dynamic. You think you’ve got it together. You think you’re soaring at the pinnacle of the e-learning teacher world. You attend a couple of conferences and people are impressed with your new ideas and you think, man, I’m SO good at this. Continue reading “When you get too busy to be innovative…”

Dynamics of Human…Wait, What?

I’m teaching a course that is new to me. It’s HHD3O–Dynamics of Human Relationships. It’s a cool course. It’s about self-esteem, the way we relate to other, relationships in the workplace and our personal lives, conflict resolution, etc.

Continue reading “Dynamics of Human…Wait, What?”

Some Perspective

Although I’m sure no one is keeping tabs on me and the frequency of my blogging, I feel the need to explain.

Continue reading “Some Perspective”

BOLTT 2016

This week I had the privilege of attending the BOLTT (Bringing Online Teachers Together) Conference in Toronto, that was put on by our Ontario eLearning Consortium. This was the first conference I’ve ever presented at. There were perhaps 170 attendees from as far away as Ottawa and Wikwemikong (on Manitoulin). The conference was well-organized, and they fed us well 🙂

Continue reading “BOLTT 2016”

Documenting for Learning

We live in an age where our programmed default is documentation. We post things on Facebook, we tweet, and we chronicle. Last night I took a picture of the Texas brisket sandwich I ate in a restaurant in York Mills. I tweet about every new comic book I’ve read that I’m impressed with. I write Yelp reviews. I blog! Any of you who have been following this blog know the bulk of what has been going on in my brain (in regards to e-learning) for the last two months. I’m a pretty open book.

documenting4learning-tolisano-mountscopus.jpg

Continue reading “Documenting for Learning”

Absenteeism Online

out-sickI got the perfect attendance award each year in high school, and so did my brother. My mother’s attitude toward school attendance was similar to an army drill sergeant’s. If my internal organs were still in their proper places inside of my body, I was going to school. We lived 700 metres from the school’s football field, so even in inclement weather, she sent us.
Continue reading “Absenteeism Online”

Don’t be a Robot

wall-e-robot-imagesE-learning makes education accessible for so many people. In our board, according to admin, we are now reaching people we never were able to reach before in Adult Education. We can now offer education to students who are working full-time or have other commitments that prevent them from being in a daytime classroom. Enrollment is up, and I’m really excited.

Continue reading “Don’t be a Robot”

Replacing Blueberry Muffins is Difficult, but I’ll Give it My Best

muffin1.jpgWhen I was in university I worked at Starbucks, and I would have these types of conversations with people:
Customer: “I would like a blueberry muffin.”
Me: “I’m sorry, but we seem to have sold out of those today.”
Customer: “But I really wanted a blueberry muffin.”
Me: “I’m sorry. There just aren’t any left. Would you like a different kind of muffin?”
Customer: “I drove over here just to get a blueberry muffin.” Continue reading “Replacing Blueberry Muffins is Difficult, but I’ll Give it My Best”

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