18 April 2008

Learning never stops!

Some spontaneous thoughts on PLN ... Nancy White's bookmarks on del.icio.us just showed up with something about "PLN"and somehow it occurred to me that I needed to know what this meant. Timely really, as I read this article on David Warlick's blog, because I am just wrapping up a four week online course on knowledge sharing, which I now realize is a clear example of my PLN, my "Personal Learning Network."

Learning is next to godliness ... somehow my PLN of my early years managed to sink that value deep into me. Although caught up in the day-to-day demands of large organizations and professional "carrots and sticks," I think it becomes possible to lose track of this. PLN play a vital role not only for one self, but also for others as:
  • part of our own "continuing education" for professional and personal development
  • something to be instilled in others; key role in mentoring and managing
Each of these points is an essay in itself. Does anyone know of good information supporting these ideas?

My mind has already got me thinking of how the Web2.0 technologies will impact our PLN. The article talks about Twitter.

Personally I'm fascinated thinking of the cultural and organizational impact of technology such as Twitter ... an enclosed classroom or meeting room, or a delimited group of individuals, is suddenly opened up to the Global Village. Of course opening up can be good or bad, depending on one's perspective. Not all would be comfortable with, welcome, or find value in this level of exposure. I doubt there will be Twittering in my office's meetings anytime soon!

It would seem there is the potential for too much of a good thing here, although Twitter's website does say it is the "modern antidote to information overload." There certainly is a need for limiting or filtering, and this is why the role of an established, defined networks is so very important.

But the potential for valuable input is phenomenal.


Nancy White said...

My personal learning is the fuel that moves me forward - even when the carrots and sticks are getting me down! I realize it is also a personal form of entertainment - a sentiment not everyone shares. ;-)

I have found TWitter really useful when I have a question (I have a great twitter network - very strong on the education and NPO sector) but I ignore it for days on end when I'm busy/offline. (I don't use the mobile phone interface. Too expensive for me.)

It is teaching me to be more brief. From the length of this comment, you can tell this is an area where I need improvement.

By the way, did you see the podcast I did with Scott Leslie (who writes A LOT about PLEs) on Trailfire? http://www.fullcirc.com/wp/2008/04/09/scott-leslie-on-trailfire/

Nancy White said...

One more circle back here to your blog, Michael, to thank you for your wonderful participation in the KS workshop. We've been leaving notes today in people's learning logs, but I get to leave on in your BLOG!

I have really appreciated your curiosity and passion for learning - it is a gift to the group. Thank you!