personal learning environment

Personal Learning Environment

<reflection>I have taught at six different schools in my career, two of which were so small I was the only math teacher. These two schools provided an opportunity saddled with a burden. On the one hand, I had freedom. While on the other, I had isolation. When I first considered my PLE, I failed to recognize the influence of the individual. In the first draft of my PLE, I included the faculty and students of Lakenheath High School and the students and faculty of the University of Wisconsin-Stout eLearning certificate program. Notice, though, both of these descriptions omit recognition of specific individuals. Now aware of this, I accept that I may be an isolationist. I enjoy the interaction within the discussion boards and group activities, but at the end of the day I do not really trust anyone else to be intimately involved with my work in the f2f classroom. I am willing share what I am doing as well as steal what is working for others, but true collaboration is missing. I must change. The time has come to embrace collaboration and truly model the very thing that I want my students to do.</reflection>

My Personal Learning Environment (PLE) includes interacting with and learning from the faculty and students at Lakenheath High School as well as the faculty and students in the University of Wisconsin-Stout  eLearning certificate program. The Web 2.0 tools which I currently use in my PLE include LON-CAPA (a course management system) and Google Drive. These tools are used on a daily basis to support student learning. My website,, and blog are online but require additional work. I am currently exploring ways to improve both as well as to entice more Internet traffic. As I work to complete the eLearning certificate program and become an online instructor, <edit>I want to learn how to use!! will support collaboration and social networking as well as enhance the communication pieces I already use. I made this change because I realized I was not going to invest quality time in learning Twitter and Pinterest. I currently use weekly emails to communicate with students and parents, thus making Twitter redundant. I believe! will duplicate some of the functions of Pinterest and there is no need to use both.</edit> Tumblr. is included here because I want to become a professional photographer. Investing time in Tumblr. will allow me to organize and display my photographs in a quality manner as well as market them to a global audience. <edit>Finally, no Personal Learning Environment would be complete without acknowledging the people who have had a profound impact on my development as a teacher, Kent Worford and Liz Dunham. Kent, then as Principal, allowed me to use LON-CAPA with my Geometry classes. Liz, then a Staff Developer, mentored me in how to manage a f2f classroom. The fundamentals of which easily transfer to an online environment. I needed to acknowledge the impact of these two educators on my career. Kent provided the pathway for me to move my f2f classroom to online. At my request, Kent helped establish a LON-CAPA domain for our school and supported the integration of LON-CAPA into the day-to-day function of the Geometry courses. Liz, in her role as a Staff Developer, challenged me to look at the management of my f2f classroom and to implement routines to address the areas of concern. The basic lessons in classroom management has lead me to understand how I want my classroom to function and adjust those functions when needed. Many of these ideas will transfer to the online environment with little or no modifications. As I move to become an online instructor, I will continue to reach out to these mentors for guidance and considerations.</edit>

Note: The layout of my personal learning environment graphic is intentional. The size of the boxes for each component has hiearchial relevance. The larger the box indicates greater current use. The quote represents my desire to say meaningful things about education. The photograph was chosen based on the expression of excitement. The wooden background was selected to convey a natural, grounded tone.

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