As a learner who grew up during the MLTI program, I have had many opportunities to grow up learning through technology. Some of these experiences have been very good, and others, not so much. I remember in the beginning, my teachers didn't really know what to do with the technology, so it was a lot of substitution; typing an essay instead of writing it, or doing research online instead of in the library. Even in college the technology I used wasn't very transformative. Looking at both of these times through a lens of andragogy and pedagogy, it was pedagogy; the teacher would tell me what to do, and I would do it. Once I got to college, it started to transform a little. Research topics became broader, but I still wasn't doing it because I wanted to, it was because was told I had to. For me, a moment when this changed was when I was introduced to the teachers' world of Twitter. When I was introduced to the world of Twitter Chats, I was self directing my learning. Sure, there would be different topics that were to be covered, but I could determine if that topic was a good match for what I wanted to learn. For the first time, I could decide if I wanted to be a part of that chat, and if I did, collaborate with people with different experiences on trying to solve the same teaching problems that I was seeing. It was like a whole new world to me. If I look at Twitter chats through an androgogy lens, I can see that it includes self directed learning and problem based learning. When I participate I am able to chose which problem I want to work on. Twitter chats also happen in a cooperative learning climate online. If I have a question or a comment I can reply to the person's post and we can have a discussion around it that other people can jump in on as long as we continue to use the group hashtag. Finally, when participating in these chats, I have to draw upon my knowledge of teaching. It would be very hard for me to participate in these chats if I didn't have any knowledge in teaching. Sometimes, it is difficult to participate in some chats based on the topics if you don't have the background knowledge. For example, something I am interested in learning about is DEEPdt; however, my background knowledge is very small on that topic, so my participation in that chat would only be surface level. While my contribution my not be deep, the collaboration I get from others will help to deepen my understanding. One thing that I do see missing looking at Twitter from andragogy though, is that there isn't an objective that the collective is trying to achieve. Therefore, Twitter Chats are not designed into activities that can help the learner meet an objective. However, I believe that I learner can self create their own objectives and use Twitter to help them achieve their goal.
T. (2011). Adult Learning Theories. Teal Center Fact Shhet, (11), 1-4. Retrieved September 28, 2016.
My name is Jessica Meservey and I am a 6th grade teacher. There is no level that I would rather be teaching and learning with. I currently teach in rural Maine. I love to integrate technology into my classroom as we are 1:1. Find me on Twitter at @MsMeservey.