A SELF-DETERMINED LEARNING JOURNEY: Introduction
After concluding my first online workshop on Monday, I have been offering follow up guidance to some of my participants. It’s important to note that all my participants were music teachers and they range from different backgrounds, age and expertise.
What stands out from the recent inquiries is that they are practicing the newly acquired skill. They sent me videos of their work, along with their questions. I observed and acknowledged that this new tool I introduced is new to them and they needed a lot of help.
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“Do you remember the first time you learn to drive?”
I bet most us felt very disorientated and even confused, trying to coordinate our four limbs to the steering wheel, the gear and the pedals. It’s a painful process, having to exercise our limbs into these new actions. On top of that, we had to be patient with ourselves due to the frustrations of learning the rules. Eventually, by the end of learning course, we are tested on our new driving skills. Isn’t that nerve wrecking?
The same applies when we learn to use new skills or knowledge. For some of us, technology is a very scary thing. There is simply too many buttons or steps to remember. Perhaps for some, it’s a piece of cake.
I highly encourage my workshop participants to practice the new skills and reminded them of their first learning experiences. Nothing comes easy the first round but it can become a smoother process when you keep going at it. Just like how we encourage our students to practice their instruments. Remind your students how they first learn their alphabets. Remind them how they first to learn to grip their pencils to write. The principles are the same.
Upon reflection, I am also reminded that the participants are also quite determined to learn. If they weren’t, they would not have sent me late night WhatsApps. I’m quite a night owl and I really don’t mind. In fact, I’m happy to see them trying and learning. They are showing self-initiative to improve themselves. These are educators working hard even after work hours. I applaud them.
In upcoming posts, I hope to share more about my self-determined learning journey. I’m not sure how much or often I will write but I hope you will stick around to read. Besides that,I would like to engage more people about this self concept. What do you understand about self-determination or self-determined learning?
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