Over the past 19 years I have been learning through Open Education. I started my honours degree course with the Open University to help me support my children’s learning as they moved on to secondary education. I have completed a variety of subject areas including mathematics, statistics and science and after a change in direction completed BSc(Hons) in Natural Sciences with Biology.
After graduating I returned to formal higher education to complete a post graduate course which allowed me access into teaching.
As I planned out my career I became interested in leadership and management and returned to the OU to complete a further post graduate module in leadership and this helped me in my career path.
I have always been interested in technologies and how they impact on my pedagogy and how I can engage learners to become independent critical thinkers through the use of digital resources. Following a professional development opportunity I was keen to introduce Scratch to children. I registered with Codecademy and worked through their sequence of activities through which I learned to code and felt that I was able to support the children in my newly formed after school code club.
Following a year where I worked within a CPD unit I investigated Khan Academy resources and dabbled in and out of their courses to consider the use of this resource to improve the capacity within my colleagues for working with new technologies and other curricular areas . I worked through some units myself and found them very informative and easy to follow.
During research for MOOCs and how they could be used within our Local Authority I was introduced to FutureLearn. At the time I was STEM co-ordinator focusing on science and a FutureLearn Assessment is For Learning in Science course became available which I worked through over a period of 6 weeks. This opened up a wide platform of students with whom to work with and learn from. It was supported by well known Education representatives. After watching short video clips and undertaking activities relating to the clip students shared ideas, collaborated and ‘liked’ each others work in a social media environment.
Open Education has enabled flexibility of learning while still being challenging for me to know that I am learning in all that I do.