Friday, July 27, 2018

2018 EDU: WW: The long and short of learning: Web worlds fit microlearning. Thinking out of the box

The long and short of learning:  
Web worlds fit microlearning
Thinking out of the box

Learning in small increments is well known to be the best learning practice.  It is hard to accommodate in the old-style school system, but can easily fit into a curriculum making use of internet resources, especially those available in a browser.  Web-worlds can provide virtual environments for learning in a browser--accessible on a laptop or tablet.   These can offer prepared lesson units approved by subject matter experts.
The Empty Classroom

The box

  • Classes in school have to be an hour long.
  • Students can only learn by sitting at chair-desks in a classroom.
  • Students can only learn from an instructor talking to them.
  • Students can only learn when an instructor tells them what they are supposed  to know.  
  • All students learn at the same rate.
  • Students demonstrate learning by showing that they remember what they have been told.
  • For thinking out of the box, read on. 
Distributed practice (also known as spaced repetition or spaced practice) is a learning strategy, where practice is broken up into a number of short sessions – over a longer period of time. Humans and animals learn items in a list more effectively when they are studied in several sessions spread out over a long period of time, rather than studied repeatedly in a short period of time, a phenomenon called the spacing effect. The opposite, massed practice, consists of fewer, longer training sessions. It is generally a less effective method of learning. For example, when studying for an exam dispersing your studying more frequently over a larger period of time will result in more effective learning than intense study the night before.  --Wikipedia
More after the break

Metaverse events, recent and upcoming


The mystery of the box

  • How did adolescents learn to use the internet? 
  • Parents didn't teach them.  Schools didn't teach them.
  • Heresy: Out of the box is a mysterious power that enables youngsters to learn on their own.
  • Come to think of it, some adults do that, too.

Self managed learning

    The mysterious power hiding in plain sight

    • We all know what that power is that enables youngsters to learn on their own.
    • It works for us too.  Simply put, we learn a skill because we want to use it.

    Why doesn't that power work in school?

    • What skills are they practicing in school?  
    • OK, some of those skills do have an obvious use.  
    • But much of the time the skill is:
    • demonstrate that you remember what you were told or had to read.
    • What job description calls for that skill?
    • OK, being a college student does call for that skill, but that's not a job.
    • It is not as if reading instructions would make you able to follow them. 
    • The Secret of the Instruction Manual
    • Sure, lots of jobs call for learning on the job.
    • And some of those jobs actually call for demonstrating that learning.  
    • On the job, part of what you need to learn is to fit the right action to the cue.
    • The cue is never sitting at a student desk looking at a test.  
    • And the right action is never to write down what you are supposed to do.  
    • On the job, the cue will be something that happens on your job.
    • And the right action will be doing something about it.  
    • Mitigating Cyber Security Risk with Scenario-Based Games
    Microlearning  deals with relatively small learning units and short-term learning activities. Generally, the term "microlearning" refers to micro-perspectives in the context of learning, education and training. More frequently, the term is used in the domain of e-learning and related fields in the sense of a new paradigmatic perspective on learning processes in mediated environments.

    Can project-based learning fit with microlearning?

    • A project is big.  Nothing micro about it, right?
    • Wrong!  Anything big is made out of lots of little things.
    • If you already know everything about doing the project, there is nothing to learn.
    • But with projects designed for learning?
    • Project-based learning uses projects that demand new skills.    
    • Learners can choose how they will learn those new skills.
    • If they want to learn in hour chunks, they can.
    • If they want to learn in two-hour chunks or ten-minute chunks, they can.
    • If they want to fit the chunk size to the learning task, they can.
    • All that because the method lets the learners manage their own learning. 

    Can learners manage their own learning?

    • They better get that skill.  Or they stop learning when they get out of school.
    • In the olden days, maybe people didn't need to learn much after they were grown.
    • In these newer days, you must learn as fast as you can just to keep up with the others.
    • Because the others already know how to manage their own learning.
    • Not all of them, of course.  But you won't notice the ones that stopped learning.
    • Because they are already left behind, looking for jobs that are vanishing. 


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    • Thinkerer Melville in Second Life, Selby Evans in Kitely
    • Web-worlds, 3D virtual worlds running in a browser. Summary
    • Web-worlds are small and run in a browser with nothing else to install.
    • Full virtual worlds are a bigger experience, but need extra software installed.

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            • Selby Evans in Kitely, Thinkerer Melville in Second Life
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