Definitely thinking of all of you while also feeling guilty of being invisible or partly absent today. My day was packed and I could only engage with BYOD4L in the periphery. Reflecting on this now, I am not sure it was a bad thing. Too often we teacher think we need to be there all the time and orchestrate every single bit of learning opportunity. When we do that constantly, there is a danger, I think, to create dependency. On the other hand, this is a team effort and if we all facilitate a little bit and create personal connections with people and ideas that deepen engagement and promote autonomous collaborative learning driven by the learners, I mean, this can only be a good thing. Yesterday, a session I did for our PGCAP course, and a conversation I had afterwards with my colleague with whom I team-taught this, made me remember that we can only open the door to learning opportunities, what happens is up to our learners. Often also our learners themselves create their own doors and these are even more valuable and demonstrate a commitment to learning. So perhaps not being there and not responding to every single piece of thought is a good thing? While I was not there, I was thinking of you all, as the song goes and BYOD4L stayed in my mind for the whole day. The facilitator community we have really helps to feel part of a team and the support among the facilitators and the encouragement we give is one of the strengths of this initiative. We are open with each other, most of us capture our reflections and share them openly not just with each other but also with the wider public. No idea, if anybody is reading as comments have been limited but for us, our own narratives will be extremely valuable when we start evaluating BYOD4 and attempt to come to some conclusions linked to the facilitator experience in open educational settings and especially ones like ours.
Our daily Tweetchats seem to work really well and what I like especially is the informal and personal character of these and how we really have started making connection and communicate with each other and are actually (quite) open in a (very) public space. A call made by one of our participants made me smile and I am adding it here as this reflects, at least for me, some of my own experiences:
“I have just signed up for the MOOC on gamification. It would be great if some BYOD4L people would join in too so I won’t be lonely.”
This feeling of togetherness is what makes BYOD4L so special. I would love to hear from you, how we can create learning togetherness and what the impact of such models could potentially have on engaging the un- or less-engaged in learning. I look forward to your thoughts.