This morning I woke to find everything centred around answering one question. Why? I found that during the night I became included in a larger discussion on Twitter (that discussed why) and is directly relevant to the ethos of #MUS65 and of my daily post quest. Why should I, or my students blog? We aren’t studying writing after all, we are studying music, and music teaching and performing… but it is so relevant. The Twitter conversation revolved around examples of people who are excellent online teachers and moved to blogs and how they help people learn. I was involved because I suggested Laura Gibbs as one of these gurus. She is epic. She teaches wholly online, and has boundless energy and creativity.
The teaching and learning benefits were coming fast in that conversation. Here are a few of the gems that Laura Gibbs shared in that conversation:
- One of most powerful things is when students sees other students who LOVE to read, write.
- It also helps when course is designed to make the learning visible; another virtue of blogs.
- In classroom I was center of attention: it was fun, yes, but NOT good for learning. I prefer online.
- Online takes longer, but is both broader & deeper (in the end) than what I experienced in classroom 🙂
- Plus, it takes the students a while to get over the sheer weirdness of how the class works… but I am patient. 🙂
Those points were all individual tweets, and they have so much depth. Laura does not in any way claim that face to face is not valuable, or not good, but she has cultivated a real way of allowing students to fully engage via online platforms. SO good!
Now the conversation continued through my day…. I found myself bumping into people saying they wish more skills like communication, networking, and being able to seek information and move toward answering questions that were meaningful to them were taught in formalised education, and I thought YES!
In writing, I learn to have a voice. I need a voice to communicate to others, and if I can refine that voice so I am clear and take the time to explore methods of communication and the meaning that people might associate or take from my words, – if I look at my processes, then hopefully I become a better communicator. We learn from doing, listening, watching, reflecting, and taking the time to put thoughts about musical pursuits into words, even though music may not be directly about writing, serves as an active way to reflect on process and improve – communications, connections, knowledge. There is definitely a reason, and it may be a bit meta… but I love it!
I have been thinking about the #MUS654 Session 1 tasks… and at some point in my day today I recorded a soundscape and took a photo of where it was. That will be a post for another day, and it will invite your participation to see if you can guess where I was and what was going on around me.
For today, there is a method in this madness, and I’m reflecting on it.
Featured image is made by Laura Gibbs, shared here, as we were talking about the value of metacognition: