I just finished viewing the 7 1/2 Habits of Lifelong Learners video, which was interesting to me because it presents a different viewpoint of learning – putting the learner in control of the process and outcome. Too many of us in education keep all of the learning “power” in our own hands, rather than allowing our students to make decisions. Even within a set curriculum, there ought to be room to factor in the interests and strengths of the individual learner, perhaps in the topic chosen, the resources used, or the end products created. Starting now, I plan to look for ways to give students more freedom of choice when it comes to projects.
The easiest of the habits for me is accepting responsiblity for my own learning. I have always been willing to read and research new things, attend workshops and trainings, and play around with available technologies. Although not a digital native, I attended college in the 80s when computers were beginning to be widely used, so I’ve used them enthusiastically throughout my professional life.
Ironically, the most difficult habit for me can be using technology to make my life easier. That’s because sometimes it seems as though the amount of time it takes to become proficient with an application outweighs the time that will be saved in the end, or that the time to learn a new skill just isn’t available at all. It’s probably Habit #1, Begin With the End in Mind, that will help with this problem. If I can pinpoint a particular task and recognize that there is a more efficient way to accomplish it, then I can feel good about taking the necessary time to become familiar with the new way of doing things.