Sunday, June 20, 2010

Fitting the pieces together: How do learning theories describe me as a learner?

There are theories that define the way we learn.  We have been exposed to different teaching styles that my address different learning theories.  Six weeks ago, I considered that I learned in a constructivism way.  As a child, I was instructed using the behaviorism model.  My parents used positive and negative reinforcement to teach me behavior actions.  From brushing my teeth every morning to getting all A’s was part of the plan.  I was able to earn prizes or get punished if things went wrong.   As I grew, I became curious about the way things work and things I could learn.  I started to learn things by myself and to experiment new things, such as: playing instruments, typing, knitting, driving and building and repairing computers. 

After learning about different learning theories, I have seen that I do learn in other ways that I never thought before.  I am learning through social learning.  Every discussion board, guides my learning based on others ideas and understanding of a concept.  I can share my understanding and see other points of view that are elaborating on my initial thoughts.  Many times when I read other posts, I go back to the text and follow their references to learn more about the topic.  In the past, I did not like the idea of working as a team, because of bad experiences.  These days, I understand the value of this learning approach and the benefits of the use of technology to facilitate these experiences.  I can also add, that as an adult learner I am able to select what I want to learn, the pace of the learning process and connect new information to my prior knowledge as part of my professional development. I don’t want to ignore, the experience of developing my learning network.  As part of Connectivism we learn making connections that are related and develop concepts.  These connections could be at your social, work or personal level.

The use of technology enriches of my learning experiences.  I have access to information, professional development courses, sharing with my friends and family members by the use of social networks such as Facebook, MSN, Skype or OOVOO, communication through emails, use of personal webs, search engines and collaborative work with peers with the use of Google documents. 

As an Instructional Designer, I have the responsibility of providing my students a variety of experiences that will address their learning styles.  Through the years, I have learned in different ways and I have been exposed by different teaching styles.  I agree that the brain is unique, learning will always occur and teaching will always be a challenge that with the use of technology can be enriched and driven to its maximum capabilities.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010



Thanks for visiting my blog again. This mind map presents my learning network, please feel free to leave your comments and questions. 


Please click on the image to enlarge


  • How has your network changed the way you learn?

My family, my community and my technology tools have influenced my learning experience.  In my years of elementary school, I was exposed to old books, encyclopedias and many trips to places of interest such as museums, libraries and theaters.  My parents used to take us to different types of social activities such as concerts, plays, conferences and sports.  My parents were building my background knowledge, fact that help me make connections with the classroom material and the books I was using during my school years.

My college life was enriched with the use of technology.  It was the beginning of the access of the Internet in the 90’s.  The use of digital format encyclopedias and some multimedia resources were at that time, an excellent resource.  The use of software such as Office Word and Power Point added an extra tool to share and store information with my peers. 

  • Which digital tools best facilitate learning for you?

Today, my learning network changes and grows everyday.  The use of technology provides me with tools that help me learn in different areas of my life.  In my mind map, I present areas in which I am learning every day, personal life, my family, my career, professional development and my gadgets or hobbies.

In my personal life, I learn with the use of my computer and my IPhone.  The use of social networks such as Facebook, Skype and Oovoo provides my tools to exchange ideas with teachers in other places and cooperate in different learning and teaching efforts.  I stay updated in all the technological changes through news websites and IPhone apps.  The use of Netflix provides movies from were I also learn from.

As a teacher, I need to be at the pace of the latest technologies.  Web 2.0 tools give me tools to guide and enrich my learning process.  The use of search engines and video collection not only provides me tools to enrich my lessons, also answers many questions. 

My professional development is totally connected to technology.  Studying online, sharing blogs,  and the use of Google Educator tools, moves me into a level of sharing online with other professionals and teachers and share my ideas. 

My newest learning tool is my IPad, everyday I learn something new and it facilitates my learning process to another level.  First and the reason I bought it was to have access to my Walden Class everywhere and anytime.  I can read my peers comments and participation in the discussion blog and have access to the articles for every week.  I use and app, named Good Reader to keep all my articles in PDF format, and be able to read it and study “on the go”.  I have access to dictionaries, and any website needed in my studies.  I have my favorites magazines to read, ICreate brings technology tutorials that I read every month and teaches me all the tips and tricks for apple computers.  Also, I have access to videos and podcast that I use to learn.  Using the Google app, I can easily share ideas from the computer to my IPad.  My IPad has Keynote and Pages apps, that are the equivalent to Word and Power Poing.  I can connect my IPad to my projector and share my ideas and learning sites with my students.

  • How do you gain new knowledge when you have questions?

These days finding answers to my questions are easier.  Making an online search could bring almost an answer for every question I have.  The use of effective technology helps my answers my question and answer some for my students.

  • In what ways does your personal learning network support or refute the central tenets of connectivism?

     My learning network supports the central principles of connectivism.  Some of these principals are: 
·      Learning and knowledge rests in diversity of opinions
·      Learning is a process of connecting specialized nodes or information sources.
·      Nurturing and maintaining connections is needed to facilitate continual learning.
·      Ability to see connections between fields, ideas, and concepts is a core skill.
·      Decision-making is itself a learning process.

In conclusion, Connectivism gives us the opportunity to share, search and use different technologies to add more information to a concept that we are learning about.  These days, we can decide what to learn about and with the easy use of technology we can almost about any topic.  The information is been updated every minute and the use and benefit of the Internet bring us the world wide news and information actual and at a click distance.  As an adult we need to have goals, commitment and motivation, after those factors you are ready to turn on your computer and start learning to help others learn in the future.


elearnspace. Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age. (n.d.). elearnspace. everything elearning.. Retrieved June 6, 2010, from

Conlan, J., Grabowski, S., & Smith, K. (2003). Adult learning. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved from on May 31, 2010.

Davis, C., Edmunds, E., & Kelly-Bateman, V. (2008). Connectivism. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved from