Time flies so fast. Here we are on our “finals week.” Counting back the days we’ve spent in this course may be so little, but the knowledge and understanding we’ve gained are superb. I never imagine Distance Education (DE) will be this great. I can even say that I’ve learned so much more that what I can obtain in one semester of traditional classroom interaction, partly because of the self-regulation learning that I somehow honed in myself. And I’m pretty sure most of my classmates feel the same.
Distance Learning is more than what I used to think of. Before, I was just thinking that DE is a boring program whereby I just need to read and read the prescribed modules. I also thought that learning and understanding will be fragmented as I won’t encounter my “physical teacher” who can answer me outright should I have queries in mind. However, while I was enjoying the labor of being a De student, I came to realize so many things and subsequently correct my misperceptions. First, I appreciate the fact that I was able to meet many teachers with rich and diverse ideas-my classmates. Not to mention what Teacher Malou did for us to use our critical thinking. Though I haven’t met any physical teacher, well, every time I do my post or entries in the discussion forum, I encounter several teachers in their own ways. I learned a lot from their perspectives which I believe were more plenty than what a single traditional classroom teacher can give me. Thanks so much everyone! Especially to you Teacher Malou for facilitating the class well. 😀
Secondly, thinking that DE program is boring is TOTALLY WRONG! For me, such approach to teaching-learning was indeed exciting (based on my experiences here in UPOU). There were days I consider overwhelming as far as outside conflicts are concerned, but it helped me in organizing my things and plans better than before. I remember what the two students mentioned in the video before we start this class; that self-discipline and proper time management are very essential. 100% agree on that! DE taught me to become more responsible and efficient. And I know I can apply it to everyday living.
Theoretical foundations of Learning are very important. Knowing how students learn best differently is a big factor among educators towards effective planning and teaching implementation. Considering the diversity of learners, we can always capitalize on their strengths in learning in an effort of mobilizing other aspects of themselves. Personally, these theories provided me a more solid understanding of how should I teach in the future. Though I am an advocate of teaching strategies even before, my belief of creating and integrating something “new” the old classroom has been reaffirmed in this course. If there’s one thought I consider very important learning as of now, that would be empowering my future students to become more active in the pursuit of acquiring knowledge, skills and attitude. Much has been said about the indispensable role teachers do, but I believe that the present time calls for a more “responsible learning” mode.
Discussion forums and e-Journal entries are great learning tools. Engaging in several group discussions is something I anticipated before I applied in this program. I used to think of this as the heart of DE as a means of facilitating meaningful exchanges in ideas and opinions. And I guess I find myself right. I appreciate the learning opportunities that these forums gave me every time I open up the course site. I can say that the class in general is so smart. At times my beliefs and points were challenged, but it led me to widen my understanding and insights. I met a lot of brilliant people which somehow inspired me to become one of them in the near time. As teacher Malou once said, the class is full of eager and enthusiastic minds. Pretty much because of your mind-stimulating activities Teacher! 😀 Truly, I learned many things from them, and I hope that they also gained even a little from my shared posts.
Likewise, our e-journal served as our “notebooks” in this class. Like a student who is diligent in taking down notes while listening to his teacher, I was also given chance to do the same thing. Admittedly, I encountered some difficulties from the creation of it up to how I can improve its appearance. I am not that superb in computer technology. That explains the simplicity of my blog page. 😀 This was the first time I created my own blog in fact. However, the purpose of it I know served me well. Through that, I was able to extend my points and ideas about the topics that we have just discussed. Further, it also became a tool to know my classmates more. Personal reflections and realizations section gave us ample space to express ourselves as DE students. I just hope my personal schedule provides me more time to read others’ posts. Well, for sure we can still do this even after the course is over. Learning is continuous, as they say.
When you’re down, remember that your IFC and Classmates are there to support you. Many times I was overwhelmed by the tasks needed to accomplish coupled with the pressures from my other studies/subjects and work, but the unending support from my classmates was so powerful that I was encouraged to continue what I’ve started. Social persuasion as I can remember form Social learning theory is one powerful thing that played vital role in keeping us cohesive and determined.
Studying while working has never been easy for me, but for some reasons, I still find the course enjoying at the end of the day. Not to mention the friendship some of us built within a short period of time. We haven’t seen each other yet, but everyone’s “presence” was really felt so as our Faculty In Charge (FIC) who made the entire learning experience challenging and fun. Thanks Teacher Malou! 😀
The game is not yet over. We just have started. Now that we’ve come to the end of this term (specifically for this course EDS 103), I know we will continuously bear in our minds and hearts whatever it is that we’ve learned. For me, it’s a very good foundation for us who aspire to become noble teachers. I am looking forward to experience same level of enthusiasm and learning spirit in the coming terms. I will definitely miss everyone. I know we will all meet again-maybe not as classmates anymore, but for one surest thing, as professional teachers in our respective fields. Stay positive!
Cheers! 😀 😀 😀