Introducing Jonas Bäckelin, Contributed by Liz Renshaw:
1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself Jonas?
My name is Jonas Bäckelin and I’m living in Balchik by the Black Sea Coast of Bulgaria. My professional career started with my qualifications in environmental chemistry and marine biology, followed by working as a teacher with specialization in didactics and ‘Information and Communication Technology’ (ICT). I’m now focusing on my thesis for my Master of Arts and Social Science in ‘Adult Learning and Global Change’ (ALGC), with the working title “Navigating Distributed Knowledge with the use of Web Tools”. My commitment to a new level of teacher training curriculum has involved me in the development of coherent strategies to fully integrate the use of computers as pedagogical tools in the classroom.
In 2012 I’ve started eduToolkit a ‘Grassroots Organization’ promoting ‘Teachers Open Online Learning’ (TOOL) for Professional Development. We investigate the concept of ‘The Networked Teacher’ and find out more about ‘Networked Literacy & Fluency’ in education. I’m developing our first course with the help of WikiEducator called “Certified Networked Teacher – The Use of WebTools” and we will use assessment badges through Peer-2-Peer University (P2PU).
2. Why did you decide to participate in Change11?
A: My fellow students from Canada in ALGC introduced me to the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) “CCK08-Connectivism and Connective Knowledge”, but it took me until the third offering of CCK11 facilitated by Stephen Downes, George Siemens and Dave Cormier until I was participating as a for non-credit student. I got bitten by the MOOC bug, completed the eduMOOC and enrolled as ‘Network Mentor’ in Alec Couros course “EC&I831-Social Media and Open Education”. Continuing with the MOOC ‘Change – Education, Learning and Technology’ in September was only natural as an ‘early adopter’.
3. What have been a couple of highlights so far in the Mooc?
A: We are moving several frontiers simultaneously and I’m starting to realize that a single teacher can’t cope with the scope of change in education. Some of the highlight are Mobile Learning (Zoraini Wati Abas), Collective learning (Allison Littlejohn), Rhizomatic Learning (Dave Cormier), Slow learning (Clark Quinn), Authentic learning (Jan Herrington). The general trend is that fragmented and distributed knowledge can be managed through teaching, but we need online resources and tools.
4. How do you deal with the abundance of information in the Mooc?
A: I try to pay attention to outlines or key distinctions in order to create my own learning outcomes. When listening to recordings or reading blog posts and articles I use our traditional tool Pen & Paper to create a concept map. During CCK11 I created a workflow where I summarized my progress weekly in Insights, Thoughts and Questions. This model has proven useful for monthly updates in the Change MOOC. With help of examples and blog posts from other participants I like to make comparisons and find relationships – Remix and Mash-Up.
5. How do you go about building and sustaining your Personal Learning Network?
A: My struggle involves finding the balance between Practice & Reflection (i.e. blogging) and Model & Demonstrate (i.e. facilitating learning) and my main focus is on how I will become a node that creates learning resources for teacher’s open online learning. The connections with experts in the ‘knowledge domain’ have grown into my ‘Personal Learning Network’, but the self-generating and sustainable networks come from expectations and feedback among peers and friends. NEXT PAGE