On the home stretch

I’m back in a classroom in Building A at the Broadway campus of VCC for my final course. I’m taking 3230 the Evaluation of Learning and am looking forward to a good week of learning. 

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Podcast Re: Info Graphic

This is one of my final assignments for 3240. I’m still trying to figure out how to host a podcast but since I’m not set up to start making them a regular thing I thought I’d just plunk it here for now. If you want to know how I feel about making my info graphic and hear my first podcast, have a listen.

Click here to listen

My latest assignment – Info-graphic

This is something I came up with for my 3240 class. It describes the very basic steps someone who is interested in becoming an interpreter in BC could take to achieve their goal. Since completing this assignment I have talked to a few other interpreters and have discovered a few flaws in my poster and will be making refinements if I end up using it in the public. For now this remains just an experiment in making an info-graphic and is used only for this course.

become an interpreter

The chasm that is the internet…

I have been struggling with this course for many reasons, not least of which is trying to be a father of 4 (two of whom are babies). I am typing this with one of my twin girls on my lap, because that’s just the way it goes sometimes.

Another major stumbling block has been…wait for it….wait for it….procrastination! (Did you see what I tried to do there?)

This image kind of sums up how things are going with my online course right now:

There is a great blog about this if you follow this link – this one here!  It’s ironic that most people will probably read this blog entry about procrastinating, whilst procrastinating. That’s also what makes it funny.

So this is basically my problem. I need to be on the interweb in order to do this online course but I spend too much of my time (like 99%) of it being distracted – hey look…a semi-interesting link…

Oh sorry, happened again. Here is a final image I’ll leave you with as I contemplate how to actually start doing the things I need to do for this course, and for my life:

Program Planning – Day 3

I am starting to realize that the reason I am struggling to come up with a DACUM for the courses I am interested in developing are because they may be better suited for a Learning Outcomes Approach rather than a competency approach. The reason I say this is because the courses I’m interested in are about peoples attitudes regarding a certain subject. Specifically about using social media in a more job appropriate manner. This is an attitude about what social media should be used for and as such needs to be geared with a learning outcomes approach. I think I will start to feel more comfortable putting together a course once I start learning how to put together the learning outcomes approach.
I am glad I decided to do a more skills based course for the practice DACUM in class. I chose to design a course on a DIY roof (because I just finished doing this on my own house). This gave me the feel of how to word things properly without having to think too carefully about the emotional outcomes that would be necessary with the learning outcomes approach.

back in class again

Monday – Program Planning – AKA Curriculum Development
I’m back in the saddle…yet again. It has been a busy summer off of study and work as we just had twin girls born and my life was thrown into all kinds of turmoil. I am trying to re-group and get back into the groove of learning. I am excited about this course because I believe it will help me put all of these courses together. Yesterday I planned on adding to my blog but I got busy doing other things and forgot to post this, even though I had typed up a draft already. 
Tuesday – Writing Performance Objectives

I wasn’t sure about this activity when we started but after a few practice runs I’ve realized how helpful it is to write objectives to all of my objectives. This allows me to contemplate why I am asking students to learn something and how I am going to get them to do it. This way I can be sure that what I have planned is appropriate, relative and useful. 
It was important to learn that while wording these objectives all I need is for them to contain conditions, criteria as well as the objective itself. The order that these are put in the explanation is not as important as having them included and that the explanation make sense. 
Challenges: One of my major challenges right now is getting past my own hesitation and doubt while trying to do these assignments. This has been a common theme between all of my courses in the instructor diploma program; not knowing what to focus on, what to teach. I know that it is because I currently don’t teach anything or have something direct for me to teach. I am learning to just go with an idea and focus on what I need to be learning during this program and not worry so much about the content of the assignment.
Through this reflection I think I need to just jump in with both feet and develop a course on interpreting for trades programs. I believe that this can be a 30-40 hour course if it goes into the depth that I would like to see done for those who need to be prepared for interpreting in different trades. This isn’t necessarily something that I will end up using but it will be a good exercise in how to develop a curriculum. That being said, there might be an interpreting program in Canada or the US that might want to teach their students this type of course. 
This gives me hope for the future of this course and that I might indeed be able to teach something that interests me. I look forward to more learning this week. 
Here is a definition that has helped me understand what curriculum actually is:
Curriculum: Everything that happens to the student from the moment the student attempts to register until the student graduates. – Bob Aiken 
Really it’s all about organization. Not only the institution and how it is organized but also the teaching plans and how they are organized. It comes down to how well organized, thought out and mindful things have been put together. That’s important to remember. 

Impostorship

Learning from peers today in PIDP 3260 we learned about a concept from Stephen Brookfield’s book, “The Skillful Teacher”. This idea that we all feel like impostors at some point or another resonated with me as that is how I have been feeling during ever course I take in this program. 

Today I felt that especially so as I stood in front of a room full of people who have been teaching for a while already when I myself have almost no teaching experience. I was also presenting with two people much more educated and experienced than myself, which was intimidating. 

However I learned that this is a normal feeling. That no matter how many years of experience I have I will always this feeling as will my students. Feeling inferior, unprepared and out of place is normal and ok. 

This gives me hope and allows me to continue to move forward.