So where am I?
In reflecting on the last few weeks I must confess to still feeling quite overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information. Opening yourself up to the world of networked and global learning is a little like opening the flood gates on a dam of information and once opened, it is impossible to stem the flow. I feel swamped by information coming from every direction and it just keeps coming! I really haven’t managed to find an organisational system to handle the flow. I have tried to adhere to my PKM plan but with every alert I receive from email, Diigo, Mendeley, Feedly, Twitter and all the blogs I follow [to name but a few], I feel compelled to engage. I have always been conscientious and diligent in my work but I can’t seem to switch off! It is consuming my days and nights and in the end all it seems to be doing is leaving feeling exhausted and full of self-doubt. I am finding it increasing difficult to still my mind and process all that I am reading and learning from others.
So where does that see me on Giedre Kligyte’s table of threshold concepts?
I guess as I am still trying to find a ways of working and ‘operating in a world where information is distributed over a multitude of modes and sources’ (Kligyte 2009) that makes me DISCURSIVE. Though my journey is still most certainly ‘messy’ as Cousins (2006) describes it in Kligyte’s article (2009) and I am very much still trying to find my ‘own unique pathway’ (Kligyte 2009), so does that make me LIMINAL as well? And that pretty much sums up where I am at, a foot on either side of what feels like a great ravine, struggling to find my balance and still unsure of where all this might be leading me.
“Personal learning networks may open up new worlds, but the technologies that extend our personal and professional learning beyond our immediate proximity can be difficult to understand and control.” (Warlick , 2009)
I guess I also need to reflect on Kligyte words in which she states that “participat[ing] in reflective practices…can be quite challenging and confronting.” And if that is the case, then I guess then I am on the right track! I also found comfort in George Siemen’s words as quoted in Annalise’s post ‘A Sea of Information: Run! Thanks Annalise!
Perhaps the problem really lies in the fact I don’t feel that I am achieving mastery as quickly as I think I should – the danger of comparing oneself to others I suppose. Still in the words of David Warlick (2009)
“Many of the terms used to describe the 21st-century educator—facilitator, guide, coach, curator—imply an effort to connect learners to the world they are learning about. Of course, that part of our job description requires us to be learners ourselves.”
So why then should I expect more of myself than my students?
If you haven’t read David Warlick’s article ‘Growing your learning network: New Technologies Can Keep You Connected and Help You Manage Information Overload’ it is worth a look [will share through Mendeley]. I especially like his ‘Keep it Simple’ approach. Am going to try and follow some of his advice –
“Give yourself permission to switch your
PLN off every once in a while… It is
also OK to ignore parts of your PLN when
you need to.
S can! You may need to read only one in
10 of the blogs that come through, but
that one will make you a better educator”
So where too from here?
I guess I just need to keep trusting the process and have faith that things will keep becoming a little clearer the further I progress into this course and as more and more of the dots find their connection. I also know that I need to try to develop better filters for processing information, which includes taking time to switch off and unplug and let all I am learning sink in- my challenge for the week ahead.
Little steps but still moving forward!
Kligyte, G. (2009). Threshold concept: A lens for examining networked learning. In Same places, different spaces. Proceedings ascilite Auckland 2009.http://www.ascilite.org.au/conferences/auckland09/procs/kligyte-poster.pdf
Warlick, D. (2009) Growing your own personal learning network: New Technologies Can Keep You Connected and Help You Manage Information Overload. Learning and Leading with Technology. 12-16. Retrieved from http://web.a.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.usq.edu.au/ehost/viewarticle?data=dGJyMPPp44rp2%2fdV0%2bnjisfk5Ie46%2b%2bN49vsRuvX54as2%2baH8eq%2bUK2nskewpq9Mnqu4SLewrlGet8s%2b8ujfhvHX4Yzn5eyB4rO0Uberr0uyq7Q%2b6tfsf7vb7D7i2Lt98N%2fhPvLX5VW%2fxKR57LPDYrapr0yxq6R%2b7ejrefKz5I3q4vJ99uoA&hid=410
Image by: Rick Harrison