There were some fantastic presentations at this year’s iMoot. Some of the highlights for me were: Miriam Laidlaw’s Sloodling & Moodling in a Virtual World, Suzie Bea’s Moodle Tools to Facilitate Student-as-Curator Learning, and Dan Marsden’s Tips & Tricks for Using SCORM in Moodle. In the spirit of creating ‘learning fragments’ as Bea suggests, here are the takeaways for me from her presentation.
Surprisingly, it turns out that being a mutant isn’t such a bad thing, and in fact is highly desirable compared to being a zombie. Zombies are passive, disengaged learners who spend little time exploring new things, and close themselves off to the possibilities of new learning technologies. Mutants on the other hand, are constantly engaged with learning. They devour new information, remix, create, collaborate and share. There are some interesting distinctions between the kinds of mutant learners there are, and if you can get your hands on Lime Green Labs’ MUTANT LEARNING: How to Develop a Social Learning Lab, the distinctions are explained there.
What was interesting to me was the concept of the ‘Mutant Learning Lab’, a tool, or group of tools that help learners access, organise and share ‘learning fragments’. Examples of such tools are Netvibes.com, Google Reader, Alternion.com. The key characteristics of these tools are:
- They allow learners to focus on a specific topic.
- They can be customised according to the learner’s needs.
- They facilitate connection to relevant social media, research, and learning sites.
- They aggregate, organise and provide access to learning fragments.
- They enable learners to share their knowledge.*
moodle as social learning lab
As Bea points out, Moodle was built around social constructivist principles, so there are many tools and plugins that can be used to create a mutant, or ‘social learning lab’ such as:
•Blog •Forum •Wiki •RSS Feed •People •Twitter Feeder •My Mentees •Flickr •Exabis e-Portfolio •User Bookmarks
* Lime Green Labs, ‘MUTANT LEARNING: How to Develop a Social Learning Lab’, p.6