Activity 2.5: Active play

So fro this activity i decide to try out lost in the city. A point and click style game:

http://www.bigfishgames.com/online-games/5829/lost-in-the-city/index.html

The premise is you are trapped in a room, with no knowledge of how you got there. The only info you have is a note and you must look around and find items to aid your escape, such as keys etc. 

I picked this game as i enjoyed point and click style games when younger and can see an educational value to the games. 

  • What do you think you could learn playing this game?

The game requires you to think through and apply problem solving skills to the situation. Pressure is increased with a time limited to do so. It also requires elements of logic, reasoning and deduction. What can get you out of the room and how can you use it. It applies observational skills too as you need to look around and find everything you need.

  • What (if anything) did you find engaging?

I like the premise of trying to escape and the way you are required to think around the problem. The fact that you are in control and it is first person it allows you to empathise and put yourself into the scenario.

  • What (if anything) did you find demotivational?

The game is a bit limited. You are on a rail, there is only one way to do everything so its trail and error until you get it right. The stakes are low to and your are very much hand held all the way through the process.

more Octel musings – social media and e-learning

So as usual with all things, i start really keen enthuasiastic and motivated and already I am falling behind, having only just got back on track with continuing my octel work!

Its been interesting however to use social media in  capacity for communicating with collegees, its not something i’ve done before. Coming from a FE background, a couple of colleges i’ve work with have been guarded in engaging with social media, some even to the extent of blocking its use on campus.

I can see merits to the argument that students don’t like their social areas intruded on by staff, but surely a balance has to be stuck between allowing the students the freedom to explore and engaging with them in new and unusal enviroments for staff. Its not just students who need to be taken out of their comfort zone.

I have find following the #octel hashtag on twitter has identified some interesting looking articles which are now sat on my favourites tab to read on my next tea break and do feel that it makes it a way to find out ideas and perspectives i may not normally come across in my day to day browsing of the web.

In terms of Blogs, i have a love hate relationship with blogs. I have used blogs for fundraising purposes and to document my journey on said fundraising. It sometimes would be so easy to blog and map my journey but other times i’d stare at the scream for hours and the words wouldn’t flow. Blogs can give you a voice, if you have something to say, if you don’t it can be a way to waffle aimlessly about nothing.

That said, having done my last blog its useful to come back to it and get a snap shot of my train of thought from a week ago and see whay has changed or to reflect or comments people have left. Whilst promoting E-portfolios its something important to highlight to students. Self-reflection is a good thing, its not always easy, but looking back on your thoughts, beliefs and what you have learnt does challenge you. It makes you question what you said, has what you believed changed, were you right, have you grown? All of this adds to the education cycle and allows you to reflect. For me if education does not challenge or stretch you, whats its purpose. Doing a blog has certainly already made me look at some of my views on e-learning and identify areas to develop.

Week 0 #OCTEL

My career in e-learning started out at Gloucestershire college. i’d left University with no real interest in a career in online learning, heck i didn’t really know what it was. We had at the time a very basic webct but no one used it, so like everyone else, i’d log in once a month to see if anything had been posted. When it hadn’t, i’d duly log back out and forget all about it.

For me, my career in e-learning started out quite by accident. I’d come out of University short of money, with a degree but no real direction or idea of what i wanted to do. All i know is i needed work and quickly. Then an opportunity came up for someone to work at Gloucestershire college, for designing online materials for A-level. It was for my degree subjects, so thought it would be a way to keep my degree in use and make money. So i applied, that was over 12 years ago and i’ve been working with e-learning every since minus a quick but forgettable time in customer service!

Through out my time in e-learning i have most enjoyed the training and teaching of staff. I find educational theory an area i have gravitated for, and have completed a PGCHE to improve my knowledge of Pedagogy. If technology is to be utilised effectively in the classroom, i believe it must be properly underpinned to the pedagogy of the course, and not used for technologies sake. Since doing my PGCE i have come to realise the importance of planning in e-learning and catering to the learners, not what i think is the best way to go about designing something. Through my PGCE i undetook distance and e-learning and it was fascinating to have a learners perspective on design. Thing i thought worked well, infuriated me as a learner. Particularlty with E-portfolios, which as i now head up e-portfolios at UWE has been a useful exercise!

over the coming weeks i will write more but for now i just wanted to put up a quick intro, i’m looking forward to starting the course and have no real expectations, other than a hope to learn some nex interesting stuff!