I’d like to suggest that our learning spaces should absolutely encourage nomadism as Dave Cormier describes it, but allow for and encourage those who are, by nature, workers, to metamorphose. There are positive attributes in the worker, as well.
I’m applying Cormier’s ideas to my learning spaces which connect young adults and nursing art and science knowledge, but I think these ideas would apply also to younger learners in the K-12 system. A nursing student must show up on time for skills labs to practice in simulation under expert supervision to responsibly prepare to care for real live people. You as the general public will agree, I’m sure, that you’d rather not you or your family member be “the first time”. She must be able to deal with the structure of a clinical practicum, both in terms of time frame and scope of practice, and she must be willing to accept delegated tasks and complete them. She is only able to work in that setting under the terms of agreement between the facility and the learning institution; and she is able to do so because a licensed professional is taking responsibility. So, I would suggest that some “worker” characteristics are laudable. Indeed, it could be said that we all have to submit to somebody. Is submission is getting a bad rap here? Submission suggests humility, a positive moral attribute, in my books. Students in any program, under transformational leadership, might be willing, even inspired to accept tasks and complete them. This might be even more true if the facilitator makes it clear that foundations are being laid for later exploration and discovery.
If I am understanding Cormier’s proposition, then the nomad nursing student would ask plenty of questions in preparing for her clinical day and while in the setting. She’d likely use a concept map, as opposed to a linear care plan, to make connections between pathophysiology and symptoms and treatments. She’d be observing with a critical lens the power relationships in healthcare and bold enough to ask me, “why do we need to learn this?” or “if it makes more sense to me to do it this way, can I do it this way?”, or “why did that nurse just let that doctor talk to her/that patient like that?” She’d be searching out theoretical frameworks to help her understand lack of compliance with treatment plan. She’d be using social media tools to connect with others to expand connection-making and discuss ideas.
About Cormier’s description of soldier, I perceive this “handle” would apply to nursing educators who cannot let go of content and move toward a learning-centered approach, who are reluctant to use the tech tools and platforms that access the most current state of knowledge. They hold to an outdated view of knowledge that isn’t in touch with 2011 realty, where knowledge is almost constantly changing and rearranging.
As for nomadic learning, my teaching mentor made this a requirement in a prior course, in which 30% of our mark came from co-creating our curriculum on ning.com. This allowed for nomadic wandering after individual interests and passions. There were required readings each week to form a foundation of understanding on the topic, but after that we sought out readings from nursing and non-nursing sources, and media presentations from TED and youtube, and posted them online for discussion and critique. I believe this was a great approach, to introduce students who had been trained, for the most part, in a top-down, “produce a worker” model of education, and who may have faltered initially with no marked path whatsoever. (What I just said seems to suggest that I believe learners can be socialized into an approach to learning!) As I’ve mentioned previously in this blog, the exposure to the experience of connectivism, and community as curriculum, actually birthed in them a “wanderlust”, whether or not they’d articulate it as such. In undergraduate nursing education, I believe there is room to allow for pursuit of knowledge discovery along lines of personal interests and a diversity of choice in evaluative tools, as well. And indeed, we can shift or flip our learning spaces to be about inquiry and discovery as opposed to absorbing supplied knowledge.
The world will be better off with the different-thinkers, the questioners, those who march to the beat of a different drum, but discipline to stay a course and complete a task when the interest wanes is a quality you don’t want to be without either. I say let’s promote the positive aspects of each of these exemplars in learners and ourselves and move toward nomadism. God knows the wicked problems in health care will only be sorted by nomads!
Did you know that most varieties of bamboo are rhizomatic! I didn’t until just now. Bamboo has many wonderful features. It is lightweight and flexible, highly efficient in converting CO2 to O2, and comes in a dazzling array of colors. It is able to double or triple its mass in a single growing season. Some varieties are denser than oak. New shoots are edible in the spring. the pulp is useful for paper production and the culms for timber. It is considered by some as the most important renewable resource of this century!
What do you think? Does the natural speak of life and learning? Are there more metaphors to be taken from the life of rhizomes and applied to the rhizomatic model of learning?
Pedagogy first… not every lesson requires technology. Sometimes paper and bodies work quite nicely. Today my 12 Health Assessment 220 students each received a paper abdominal organ and instructions to position themselves in the correct abdominal quadrant where this organ resides on a large one dimensional abdomen taped off into 4 quadrants on the floor. We had a little game of Tummy Twister to get the morning going. Silliness was a moderately effective antidote for stress and distraction about next week’s 3 midterms and this afternoon’s medication math quiz, but we didn’t get as far with the tummy as I’d wanted. The crowd asked for review questions to prep for the midterm and that’s where we went. I couldn’t help but wonder if Einstein was talking about test-anxiety when he lamented that his education was hindering his learning.
And that’s my choice. I may be experiencing tech-toxicity from over-exposure. I’ve been writing a paper on leadership in integration of ICT in nursing education, looking at the curriculum for the Nursing Informatics course that will be offered for the first time in Term 2 of our new program, preparing to attend a conference on the e-health record, and maybe I just want to go back to simpler times, when pastoral scenes of sacred cows could remain undisturbed for lack of electronic dissemination of evidence to change practice and upset them. This learning curve may be too steep for me to climb. I’m uncomfortable darnit!
“To grow, learners have to acknowledge discomfort and set tasks to help break the barriers of fear” (Joyce, 1984).
I’m not scared, Mr. Joyce, I’m just tired…. but I’ve set some tasks anyway, because it sounds like a reasonable thing to do to. I’ve never created a digital story before and I only have some vague notions about what this might look like. So I started a timeline list document to help me organize myself to accomplish this assignment. It’s a start.
Can you recommend a free program or product for a first-time digital story teller to weave together interview video clips, still images with voice and music?
This weekend, I took an hour with Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy, a beyond-amazing resource provided by EC&I831’s very own Laura B. As a nursing instructor, this is a resource I’m pretty sure I would have gone to my grave not knowing about but for the “networked neurons” (Mao, n.d.) of this course. Although I currently facilitate nursing skills practice labs and clinical experiences, my teaching assignment will change over time and I’ll be so glad I know about the digital take on Bloom’s. This is a great example of why people like Shelly Terrell promote PLN‘s. Including people from outside your field of expertise has wonderfully serendipitous benefits! Oh sharism, doing what we were created to do, according to author Isaac Mao, who says “sharism is encoded in the Human Genome.” I accept and believe this on an intuitive level and just saying the word, Sharism, makes me feel happy! Have any of you put that yellow sticky note on your desk with the prompt “What can I share today?” as suggested by Isaac Mao? Have you become more generous and free in sharing ideas and resources? Or are you taking this course because you’re already passionate about connectivity and sharing?
And another tangible benefit of sharism – now I understand a little better what Alec might be looking for in a vodcast in that final project because it’s there in the above-mentioned resource – criteria for evaluating any student’s digital storytelling efforts. Check it out for yourself. Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy by Andrew Churches. Speaking of said final project, I’ve been really slow to formulate a plan. I’m hoping for some fire-starting from the “networked neurons” (Mao,n.d.). C0-sojourners in EC&I831, that’s you! Here’s my first idea in its infancy… any and all feedback is welcomed. If I’m missing the point entirely, please be kind enough to tell me! (You won’t be the first one who’s had to do that in my academic career.)
I’m thinking about creating a video of all the ways in which ICT is assisting learning in our nursing program at Kelsey campus. Intended use: to share in a faculty meeting, with intent of acknowledging and promoting use of ICT and innovation with same (and, secondarily to have as a historical artifact to revisit 10 years from now). Theoretical background would include: a) Bandura’s Theory of Self-Efficacy. Self-efficacy (expectation of personal mastery and success) for a particular skill is known to be increased not only by practice, but also by observing others being successful performing the action and and by receiving verbal encouragement from credible, trustworthy sources; and b) Roger’s Diffusion of Innovation Theory.
challenges: scheduling to connect with all of the various teachers and classes/labs, inexperience with video-editing (a networking opportunity in the making)
questions: I’m unclear on expectations re: research. Would this be supporting theoretical framework as suggested above OR also why this content to this audience or something else that I’m totally missing?
God bless ya for reading!