Cooperation or collaboration
Cooperative learning and collaborative learning are not interchangeable terms.
I can only think of one example where I have moved beyond cooperation to collaboration in my learning and practice. Last session in ETL523 I was part of a team of four that produced a wiki. Initially we considered dividing up the tasks but soon realised that would have resulted in a less cohesive outcome so we changed our strategy to one that typifies collaboration. We identified our strengths, communicated ideas and content and provided each other with feedback. The collaborative learning was done in ways that would not have been possible before the advent of networks and web 2.0 tools. 21st century learners have access to a vast range of tools for collaboration but they need to know how to use them effectively.
Now that I have completed five subjects for Knowledge Networks and Digital Innovation, I am not surprised by the literacies identified by Nussbaum-Beach and Hall (2012). On a “multiliteracies scale” of one to ten I would place myself at seven. I am comfortable switching between print and digital for personal and professional purposes, I communicate via social media and I am a novice creator of digital artefacts. Rapidly changing technology means continual learning. The least challenging literacy is modeling digital-age work and learning because I can learn to use the tools and digital learning environment by being a self-directed learner. The most challenging literacy is the design of digital age learning experiences and assessments because this involves getting other people on board and accomodating school policies.
To be a connected educator, I have to be a self-directed learner as well as an educator.
I agree that this involves being open-minded, reflective, willing to take risks and to share with others. Nussbaum-Beach and Hall (2012) have given me a new perspective on the level of participation required to be a connected educator. Reading blogs and following people on social media is a start but communicating and conversing builds relationships and opportunities for collaboration.
Nussbaum-Beach, S., & Ritter Hall, L. (2011). Classroom Strategies : The Connected Educator : Learning and Leading in a Digital Age (1). Bloomington, US: Solution Tree Press.
Graphics: Created in Canva by K. Malbon using CC0 Public Domain image