Students and the New Personal Learning Environments

We often talk about how the world of work is changing, and how younger people (digital natives) will be better able to cope with this. But, how are they going to get there? What is the route they are taking to use the new tools for their own learning and development? And what can we learn from them?

This video by a grade 7 student shows her personal learning environment (or PLE). We get a sense of how she pulls together the pieces of her day, and in some ways directs her own learning with some direction from teachers. In this example, the student uses the tool Symbaloo to create her PLE, but other platforms or tools may be used. She is also using Evernote to gather information for her reports.

This reminds me of past discussions we have had about personal knowledge management (or PKM); is this, perhaps, a practical manifestation of PKM? What I like best is how focused this student is; she has obviously found a way to address information overload that plagues so many of us.

This video is courtesy Florida educator Wendy Drexler. See more details about the video. Hat tip library educator Polly-Alida Farrington.

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  1. Thanks, Connie. I loved this! The technology mash-up alone was so creative. The part that really caught my attention was students simply e-mailing experts for help, and they’re getting back to the kids and even Skyping with them! Now there’s a beautiful illustration of how social media sweeps away barriers.

  2. I’m glad you found it of interest, Kathleen. I have watched it a few times and get something new out of it.

    Great point about students contacting experts, and that barriers have been broken down! Building up a web of people resources, including experts, in this environmental is called a “personal learning network” (or PLN). Some schools have started focusing on the network first, and as we see here, then incorporate it into the overall learning environment. There is a fun little video about this as well–will dig it up for a future post.