Seems to me that one of the biggest challenges we face in the school reform area is redefining our curriculum, and the pedagogies associated with it. Over the years I’ve worked with Julia Atkin whose work on “reconceptualising the curriculum” has informed change in many schools I know of, and is currently being used to inform the development of the NZ curriculum review.
Last December, George Seimens published an article titled “Connectivism, a learning theory for the digital age” which I found really interesting. George claims that existing theories of learning, such as behaviourism, cognitivism and constructivism were all developed at a time when learning was not impacted on by technology in the way it is today. He presents an alternative theory of learning, based on an hypothesis that in the digital age we derive our competence from making connections.
George has just established a connectivism website devoted to this topic, and also a connectivism blog for socialising these ideas within the educational community. I found the powerpoint presentation he has made available really useful also for providing a summary of what connectivism is all about, or, alternatively, you can listen to George talk about this on an audio file.
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Do you think it is possible to derive a porfolio or thesis topic on the idea of Connectivism as a new learning theory in primary school aged children? I am contemplating doing this for my masters…but having been teaching for a long time I’m not sure how much I even understand … I love to learn about the new web 2.0 tools and love to implement them in my class, but it is like Chaos, because i can use them all without really understanding the impact on my students and even myself!