Application 4: Online Learning in K-12 Schools Podcast

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Connectivism and Social Learning in Practice

In this week’s learning resources we explored one strategy for social learning called cooperative learning. In Pitler, Hubbell, Kuhn, and Malenoski’s book, they provide many examples of social networking and collaboration tools that correlate to this strategy and social learning theories in general. Dr. Michael Orey states that “collaborative and cooperative learning are when kids are working together to construct an artifact and everyone in the group is responsible for the work” (Laureate 2009).
There are many types of multimedia in which students can create. A video is an excellent way for students to demonstrate their understanding and apply what they have learned. Along with multimedia there are a vast amount of web resources available to teachers and students. Web 2.0, also called the “Read Write Web” has made it possible for teachers and students to create and share their artifacts with others around the world. This form of cooperative learning shows just how education has become more global than ever. In addition to web resources there is communication software that enables students to share their ideas with others. Blogs and wikis allow students to post their work, share it, and comment on others work. A wiki is an online collaboration tool that facilitates the working together of students to create projects and artifacts.


Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2009). Program 8. Social Learning Theory. [Educational video]. Baltimore: Author.

Pitler, H., Hubbell, E., Kuhn, M., & Malenoski, K. (2007). Using technology with classroom instruction that works. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.


  1. Jody,
    I think cooperative learning is very beneficial for students. I cannot remember much about my Kindergarten to twelfth grade learning experience. However, I do recall doing cooperative projects. In science we made balloon cars in seventh grade. In high school we designed bridges to hold amounts of weight. And in middle school we made a science project cooperatively to figure out what items are conductors of electricity. The sole fact that I remember these projects to this day means that the teachers in charge made an impact. The only area that I personally would have liked to incorporate more during my time would be the technology part. It is so easy to integrate technology. For the balloon cars we could have made a spreadsheet of each group’s car and tracked how far it went. We could have done the same with the bridges we made, and even go a step further by using the spreadsheet to generate a graph or chart. You mentioned blogs and wikis in your post. For the last example, we could have made a discussion with experts outside the classroom using a blog. By bringing in technology we take that extra step further in providing a better education for all involved.

    -Nick Renninger

  2. Jody,

    The "Read Write Web" is a great collaborative tool to help students learn. Along with other electronic applications, it provides education with a spectrum of choices to use as teaching and learning tools.

    However, as much as I believe in collaboration and working together,I do think that too much of it can teach students to be dependent on others to do the work and not pull thier weight. I think that collaboration lessons should be used in the classroom, but not All the time.

  3. Jody,

    You cite a variety of programs and resources that allow for collaboration to take place with the use of technology. Sometimes the technology simple aids in the process; sometimes the technology IS the process. I believe that the more that we can allow students to work collaboratively on a project that incorporates technology, the better we prepare them for the real world. In this day and age, there are virtually no higher level jobs that do not require technological skills and/or collaborative processes.


  4. I totally agree with Nancy in that we need to give our students as much experience with technology as possible. The students ability to communicate, collaborate, and work with technology are going to be the skills that allow them to fill the jobs of the future.


  5. I agree that we need to expose our students to technology as much as possible. As students move into the workplace, they will need to work with technology. They will need technology skills as well as collaboration skills. By providing students with opportunities to collaborate in the classroom, we are providing them with the skills they will need in the future.


  6. My cousin recommended this blog and she was totally right keep up the fantastic work

    Social Learning