Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Connected Learning & Connectivism and Leadership Theories & Styles (Week 6)

Digital & Collaborative Learning (DCL) - Connected Learning & Connectivism

Connected Learning: seeks to find ways to connect the lives and experiences of learners to the outcomes that educators feel are necessary to prepare students for their futures. 

Connectivism: suggests that learning only really takes place in networks.

Why Connected Learning?

Connected Learning
- How could the learning (yours and your students) be more connected? 
Inquiry based learning, real life tasks (authentic learning)
- What would need to be changed? 
Learning should be personalised. We have tech to do that now.
- Why would it be beneficial? 
Personal interest can be pursued. 

Connectivism Provocation: Networking is learning? 
It depends (thinking can be disrupted when tweeting, but sometimes it is fun, but not actually always learning something)

Connectivism & Connected Learning:

MOOC - new way of connecting people around the world - looking at connectivism. MOOCs are rising

How connected is your presence as a teacher?

Group Tasks:
  • Interview a group member in order to design a learning network / personal learning environment

  • Design a learning network / personal learning environment for this person                 

Thank you for designing my learning network, Brigitte!

  • Reflect: How do we design learning for learning networks, rather than for formal lessons / classes only?
I started using Twitter as a tool for professional development in 2012. Following on from that, I got involved in a number of learning opportunities like TeachMeetNZ and edchatNZ. Through TeachMeetNZ (and presenting in a number of 'Live' hangouts) I learnt about Google Hangouts, which I now am a huge fan of. I found the power of the Google+ communities to be invaluable. I am part of the Virtual Learning Network (VLN), have joined Pinterest (to collate ideas), Delicious (which I don't use as actively anymore), LinkedIn and more recently 'subscribed' to a couple of teaching and learning groups on Facebook. I use Blogger to reflect on my PL & D and tag posts with the relevant PTC's (earlier RTC's). I use Storify to create stories of tweets. I also have a personal wikispace.
I enjoy being a Connected Educator and Leader.

Leadership in Digital & Collaborative Learning (LDC) - Leadership Theories & Styles

What makes a good leader? 
Model, Communication & relationships, Encouraging others, Time management, Good listener, Confident, Inspire & encourage others to act. Promoting others and gently pushing them forward, Resilient, Moral purpose.

Main theories and styles:

Leadership theories in summary:
  1. Great Man Theory - You are born a leader, or you're not. 
  2. Trait Theory -  There are dozens of specific traits that characterize a great leader.
  3. Skills Theory - There is a set of key attributes that make a great leader - practical skills, technical skills, people skills, conceptual skills.
  4. Style Theory - There are different styles of great leaders - autocratic and demanding/democratic and participative/managerial grid.
  5. Situational Theory - No one style fits all contexts. This theory is about being able to adapt.
  6. Contingency Theory - We should be matching the right person to the context, (ie, leadership style is fixed, so match it up to a situation that requires that style).
  7. Transactional Theory - Reciprocity between leader and follower, strong dependence upon reward and punishment. (Reflection: Probably the most prevalent one in the classroom setting?)
  8. Transformational Theory- A transformational leader gets buy in and commitment through encouragement, care, inspiration and VISION. They cultivate fellowship. (Reflection: Probably the one most of use teachers aspire to?)
  9. Leader-Member Exchange Theory - There is an exchange between leader and follower. This tends to be the one where an "us and them" culture develops.
  10. Servant Theory - A mixture of transformational and transactional. The leader meets the needs of the follower to achieve an environment of co-operation, trust and reciprocal service. People tend to follow out of gratitude. 

Leadership styles in summary:

How do you 'naturally' behave as a leader?
- Give people an option, not dictate, get ideas and work as a team, listen.

Task(In class) Leadership challenges: Choose one and explain how would you approach this problem

I choose 'f':
Hold people accountable. You can’t say ‘Gee, that’s too bad.’ You need to figure out what went wrong and why, get behind the reason

Discuss with your employee what happened and what each of you think went wrong. If the problem was within his control, ask him to apply the possible solutions you’ve discussed

Task(In class): Identify which leadership styles (Goleman) you are good at and which you may need to develop further.

Task: (In class): Dive into the world of leadership theories. Which one you identify with? Transactional, Transformational... or some other leadership theory?

Transactional vs Transformational leadership theory:

Task: (In class): Test your leadership style with a 50 question quiz.  
My Score: 
Participative 40
Laissez Faire 39
Transformational 32
Procedural 31
Authoritarian 27

Related media: Daniel Goleman - Emotional Intelligence (6 leadership styles) 

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