Taking a breather to reflect…

What an exciting week!!

Joining the Connected Courses Hangout on Friday, was fun and informative. Seeing everyone participate in chats, comments, and tweets really made for an immersed experience that I have not had in an educational setting. Definitely a new and valuable experience for me! I tend to apply new information, skills, and tools across all areas of my life, so this was no exception. I started thinking about blogs and how they could be used in my professional development as well as in my personal life – specifically connecting with family and friends across the globe but also in a variety of ongoing projects that I have with various groups in my volunteer and community work. I created several test blog sites and began tweaking settings that you may see on this blog before the semester is through!  I was also able to connect with another blogger about using online connected courses with English Language Learners and she shared some tools and examples that have worked in other courses:  http://almansi.wordpress.com/2014/09/11/connected-course-so-glad-for-it/.

Being in a Hangout with my coursemates and instructor really helped me get focused and excited about this fall and our group projects! Meeting everyone helped me feel connected beyond reading blogs and emails, in much the same way the MOOC helps me feel part of an online learning community. Reading and exploring ways to make games more engaging, helped me, but talking to the other learners about how to create a Minecraft game and brainstorming themes gave the reading immediate context. I’m feeling like the new kid in the neighborhood and therefore the new kid in school and the class, but I’m slowly getting my bearings and looking forward to working with my group. I’m hoping to bring my creativity, teamwork, problem-solving attitude, and love of games to this project!

Any thoughts, feelings, opinions, suggestions?

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