Why I (want to) teach

Playing a bit of catch-up here, going back to the first unit of Connected Courses and thinking about the whys of teaching and the whys of a course. One of my favorite links during this unit was Mike Wesch’s talk about Why we need a “why?”

As a relative newcomer to these types of discussions, I tweaked the question to why I (want to) teach. I’m in the middle of a grad program in Learning Technologies. When I entered the program, one of my driving questions was “What does high-quality, engaging online learning look like…and how do I do it?” One year into it, I’m finding out that learning online is really fun! There’s elements of play that can be incorporated into a class which make it enjoyable. (I recently read a great post about this topic…still searching for the link to it…) I want to be able to bring those to a class that I teach, and show what online teaching and learning looks like in different ways. (hint: it can be so much more than just PDFs and discussion forums. Once you get hooked into ds106, you can never go back…)

In a perfect world, there would be the option to construct a course from scratch. In reality, that may not be the case. Sometimes instructors find out they will be teaching a course close to the start of the semester, or there are existing materials from previous courses available for reuse. Perhaps there are departmental reasons for a standard course to be delivered…it may have to deal with accreditation requirements. All of these reasons and factors come into play.

For now, let’s dream big and imagine a space where those stipulations do not exist. Fortunately, an imagined course is starting to take shape…in the form of a final project for one of my fall semester courses. I will be using resources from Connected Courses as well as my class readings to create a course of my own. The course’s overarching theme will be the history of the internet/web from a feminist perspective and why it’s important in edtech to talk about it. I haven’t started thinking about specific course topics (mostly as I’d want the course to be co-constructed by the facilitator and participants). General offshoots might include current topics such as SOPA, the many forms of open – OERs, scholarship, pedagogy, etc.

hmm…even though there’s a great post on how to write one…I think I need help on how to end one! (Vania – you are not alone in this respect) Moving on to unit 2…

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