Helen's Escape

Sunday, July 22, 2007

The best laid plans of mice and a woman!

It was Steinbeck who quoted these lines of Robbie Burns and I can say it also relates to my plans, albeit in a very different context.

The best-laid plans o' mice an' men
Gang aft a-gley,
An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain
For promised joy.
I have almost completed my Masters in TESOL and was thinking of continuing on with the Masters of Learning Innovation, but my commitment to lifelong learning has all but evaporated, and I am sick of the books and the endless researching on the Web. I love using technology to discover new things, and maybe learning something useful along the way, but I much prefer interesting and fun things. I became ensconced in Cyberlearning and could see a whole new world of possibilites as I ventured on this voyage. My first serious journey along the super highway was when I studied Technology and Language Learning last semester. Some of my creations on the web for second language learners can be found here Encounters of a Different Kind and The Hunted. I have vacillated so much in what I want to do, and I still have plans to go to the University of Shanghai, but, for now, I feel two masters degrees are enough, so I think I will take a break after this Semester and travel for awhile, probably will need to after studying systemic functional grammar and reading the interminable research. My most recent contribution is to a project found at this address Hot Coffee Professors

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Patience is a virtue!

The completion of Assessment and Cyberlearning leaves me with one subject to go to finish the Masters. I am going to be doing Functional Grammar and I will finally be using field, tenor and mode and getting my head around language register. How do terms like mood, theme, rheme, modality and cohesion all connect? I will tell you someother time. Hilary and Ann did a sterling job with the Cyberlearning subject and I really enjoyed the task-based approach to learning. I do not have any results posted as yet.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Mission Almost Accomplished!

I have completed everything for this Semester and that's a feeling of relief. I now am a lot more informed about Cyberlearning and I think that the resource I put to-gether was an inventive little piece of work. I will have to verify this thought at a later date. The markers might think it is very ordinary. As far as assessment goes, I must say that I am a whole lot more knowledgable than a few months ago, and could almost be an expert when it comes to tests and testing.I've almost made up my mind to finish my Masters with a unit of Functional Grammar, though I am not quite sure as I have a few irons in the fire heating up, as they say.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Where have I been???????

I can only say that I have been doing that interminable assessment for both subjects I am studying this semester. Now with the virtual team experience out of the way I am letting my creativity reign supreme and putting to-gether the next cyberlearning project. I think I've changed tack quite a few times in where I am heading with it. I always enjoy using the Technology; and on the road to becoming technosavvy there was been many potholes and bumpy bits. I have to admit that I do really enjoy learning about new things. As the semester draws to a close, I still have one subject to complete my Masters next semester, so the end is nigh. The two subjects I am studying outside the Language area are in the Masters of Learning Innovation program. I sometimes see myself as a Cybrarian - a Librarian in cyberspace. I have found out that the old role of cataloguing books and filing stuff has long gone, and wow! how "the times they are a changing"

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Know the feeling?

Cyberlearning is taking on a whole new perspective for me now after putting a huge effort into doing all the reading that is required. The on-line learning resource is taking a lot of time to negotiate and keeping all the balls juggling in the air has been difficult. Fortunately, I was able to focus on a language learning component in my contribution, as I have a love of language, I really enjoyed doing my bit. Integral in all is the Technology, which is not only a means to an end, but an end in itself for me. Quite often when I become frustrated with the technology I turn to my old friend Robbie Burns who says "Prudent, cautious self-control is wisdom's root”. I am having heaps of issues with the new version of Blogger and things are just not going as they should.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

A new adventure in cyberland!

I've been remiss and had a big holiday away from blogging and with St Paddy's day just around the corner, 2007 brings new challenges in the form of Cyberlearning. I am not quite sure what convinced me to embark on such a journey, but here I am now in uncharted waters doing CLN 601 a subject in the Masters of Learning Innovation Program. I started off quite humbly in TESOL thinking that is where I should be as I love languages, learning new things, travelling and working overseas. However, like the young graduates I vacillitate just as much and am never quite sure where I'm headed. I am even thinking now that the Library is where I could eventually find professional fulfilment. They say learning is a lifelong process and I can certainly attest to that. I have to thank my CLN 618 Lecturer, Debra, for moving me out of my confort zone, (or should I say, sphere of ignorance) and into a new and exciting field. She gave me the confidence to undergo such a re-invention.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Thus far!

It is now time for reflection and thank you to Annetta, Julie and Pam for your feedback. I will now outline your collective wisdom in summary form:
  • Need for extra multi-media in the form of sound and video display;
  • The website needed navigation buttons as the story page was too long for people to scroll and find the answers;
  • Interactivity of the site was a plus and the organisation was interesting to look at and explore with effective screen displays;
  • Useful information for learners in high school, I received some bookmarks, especially the songs (though they weren't cool numbers like Pam's).
  • Use of appropriate scaffolding activities;
  • Use of the Hot Potatoe exercises were a little un-wieldly and needed to be better organised;

With regard to my own assessment of my work, and after receiving and giving feedback, I now feel I know where I could improve things. The pedagogy behind the Website was always at the forefront of my planning and making this appropriate for its targeted learner was important. I overlooked some things. I do not think I articulated the purpose of the site. I could have spelled out the language activities and skills I was targeting with the learner. Reading and vocabulary were the main macro skills which I was addressing. I hope the content was accurate without spelling and grammar errors. My colleagues were a little too kind on me with regard to error correction, I think. Another area which I didn't address on this site, but I did on the Webquest, was that I didn't enable the user to communicate with real people on-line. I was thinking of doing an email pen pal type scenario but somehow, that got lost in the translation with due date looming all too quickly. After doing lots of the HP exercises on other websites, I think some of mine were not smart enough. Even though I am a former teacher from the "smart state". Ha!, Ha!. I didn't manage to use video, as it would have made the site more interactive. That is my next challenge, and I wish I could study more computer assisted language learning, the appetite has only just been whetted.

I enjoyed my time with the Technology class and wish everyone success in their future endeavours. It would be wonderful if the old Blogs could keep on keeping on.

Did you know November is Poppy month? This is a sad, but delightful poem:

In Flanders’ fields the poppies grow

Between the crosses, row on row

That mark our place, and in the sky

The larks still bravely singing,

Scarcely heard amid the guns below.