Journeys are personal challenges. So when Brent Parkin shares his vision and his quest for offering a “learning journey” for each individual student, he’ll take all the help he can get. Parkin needs to make sure each one of these paths is prosperous (in the knowledge gain and retained) and desirable (as it reflects the student’s needs and interests.) Fortunately for Parkin, he has the support of Moodle, a powerful tool for personal, modular learning. Fortunately for students–and not just Parkin’s, but Moodle users everywhere–Parkin has been named Moodle’s Education Advisor. And fortunately for all of us, he shares his own learning journey and experiences in an interview for moodle.com.
By definition, a journey is not a situation in which someone gives a learner every answer. The trail reflects the challenges the person has decided to tackle and strives to overcome as a life’s work. But as we move forward as part of one global community, we can recognize when someone faces a familiar challenge, and the insight that experienced educators can offer to those just getting started is invaluable. Knowing, Parkin asserts, that even though we can offer some advice, no two journeys are exactly alike:
«[I] do all that I can to help them understand that I belong to them, that they own me as their teacher, and that I am there, literally, for them. It’s the importance of having that type of human connection, where each student feels honoured and that they matter, and what they do matters.»
In his brand new role, Parkin is tasked with informing pedagogical practice through the environment of tools Moodle has to offer. To some extent, his duty is making teachers more present and confident as they connect with students and their advancement. And, as we’ve learned, teachers are on a path of their own as they learn to deliver valuable learning experiences and lifelong relationships. For Parkin, Moodle is the axis of humankind: where the fabric of pedagogy and technology are converging.