Having spent Monday thinking about stakeholders on Tuesday we moved on to start planning projects. Two key challenges I think are common to this are
- choosing a suitable focus, something that interests you but is feasible within the constraints
- knowing what you don’t know, either about technologies available, how to make effective use of technologies or how different learners will engage and respond to the activities.
I think the key to addressing these challenges is planning. Independently it’s important to think about pedagogy, what is the activity you want to design, why, and pedagogically how will it work? I need to have a clear plan first, technology comes second. Then in conversation with colleagues who help you to develop ideas, identify anything that isn’t clear or transparent, and start to address some of the unknowns (or at least staring points to find the information).
To do all this planning I like to start with post it notes as its easy to add/change/adapt ideas. The picture below shows a more detailed plan for one activity (after a broad scoping activity thinking about learners, objectives, environment and the activity). I started with the learners’ activities, then how to make it clearer and the technology skills needed. Then it was thinking about what I would need to do as the teacher. Finally helpful colleagues highlighted that I hadn’t identified any constraints on the activity so I started to identify what these might be.
The discussions with everyone highlighted many other things I needed to include in my planning
- when will the activity take place – synchronous, or asynchronous?
- what time do learners need to engage?
- how often will you need to review the content to keep it up to date?
- what limitations might there be for the learners? For example will they be able to access videos at work if that’s where they’ll engage with their learning
- how will you make sure it’s accessible to everyone?
- what feedback will learners need/get and what form will it take?
- how will you evaluate or collect feedback on the activity?
Next stop… refining plans and finding the ideal technology.