Learning has always been top priority for me. I started teaching online because I found working in a traditional school frustrating. The only way I can connect with each one of my students, is to do it online. I now provide teachers with online teacher development courses.
My focus is on free e-learning for developing and underdeveloped countries. I have organized free online conferences such as Connecting Online for Instruction and Learning (CO09-CO14), MoodleMoot (2011-2014), collaborative books (CO12, CO13, Teaching with Technology), and MOOCs such as Moodle MOOC (February, June, October), Second Life MOOC (April), and Healthy Living MOOC (September), and free professional development programs such as Learn to Blend and Flip with Technology and Electronic Village Online for 2014 (M4TEVO14) on how to use Moodle (see syllabus). During the MOOCs participants learn about teaching and learning online, life skills, and how to teach with Moodle and WizIQ.
My goal is to help people become independent lifelong learners so they can teach online and share freely. Anyone can teach online with the right training. However, as things stand, most of the teachers I work with cannot afford paid programs, so I use whatever is free. The benefits of teaching online and giving free online workshops for individual and groups on how to use Moodle, WizIQ, and other educational programs that facilitate instruction and learning are enormous. I invite other educators and technology experts to give freely. Volunteer your time to present at the online conferences, MOOCs, and give free online courses.
I use Moodle and WizIQ because they are both free. Moodle is completely free while WizIQ is only free for educators who teach in an academic institution. WizIQ is free for me because I teach at Atlantic University and at a local high school. The reason I started the Moodle for Teacher courses is to help educators ensure the quality of online learning through systematic instructional design of online and blended online courses (BOL) and instructor training on online pedagogies. Participating in research studies on online learning can do this. Teachers, who take the Moodle courses, are encouraged to conduct action research projects on best practices and challenges involved with using Moodle and WizIQ and share the information with others worldwide. By learning collectively, we can improve instruction and learning.
The Moodle and WizIQ workshops are designed to engage the participants in theoretical and practical aspects of using technology, online learning, and teaching with a learning management systems and tools that allow them to share and engage in social learning activities. By the end of the course, participants, who do the tasks, acquire the knowledge and skills needed to engage in blended online learning (BOL) or blended learning (BL) courses and run their own Moodle and WizIQ courses and teach in live online classes using WizIQ. As online learners, participants quickly understand what it means to be an online learner from the student’s perspective, so they can prepare their future courses with the learner in mind.
I believe in active learning and creating artifacts as a way to learn. In my courses, participants are required to be active at least 10 hours a week on theoretical and practical aspects of online learning. They engage in creating artifacts such as video tutorials in order to practice what they learn through the use of screensharing (jing, screencast-o-matic, present me, screener, movenote), authoring tools (Youtube, Vimeo) and curating tools (Mammoth, Pinterest, Scoopit). Learning online is very rewarding for those who give it a chance.
You’re invited to join Learn to Blend and Flip with Technology (November – June, 2014), the next free Moodle MOOC 3 (see syllabus) in the month of February and Connecting Online (Join CO14), Second Life MOOC in April and so. You can find these and other free courses on Moodle for Teachers and on my Integrating Technology for Active Lifelong Learning (IT4ALL) account on WizIQ. More about these and the other free online learning initiatives in my next blog post.
Many of the teachers, who took the courses, are now co-facilitators. They help organize the courses and online conferences and support the participants as they learn about teaching with technology. You’re invited to join us so we can promote free e-learning in developing countries.
For information on my professional background and the free teacher training courses I provide, please read my bio.