Blended learning: virtual and corporeal


I struggled with blending computers with "classroom" instruction. But then the classroom passed and became a transformed learning community, inhabited by the students, and made their own. The technology, the computers, iPods, iPads, cell phones, etc., are used as the students use them–as a tool to get to the real and physical world. Or, in other words, a blended classroom isn't a classroom at all, but part of a place where what is constructed and connected through technology is enacted as a learning community. A computer lab..or a lounge, with wireless the technology permeates the space. Where what device is appropriate? Norms are getting redefined and I'm not completely sure about some boundaries–some are crystal clear, others fluid. Blending my classroom means dissolving it and merging it with a variety of spaces, extending it globally at the same time.  This is the point missed with on line instruction–it has to be enacted in the world simultaneously. In a traditional instructional model delivered on line, the learner is now isolated more than ever, not even being in the same building or room with their cohorts. By blending the model–including the corporeal with the virtual–you get the best of both types of delivery; socially on line instruction and experiential community based enactment. 'Community' is used in the widest context, and to include both narrowly focused and extended communities of practice. Community considered as encompassing virtual and physical groups that embrace all of the elements for life: protection, sustenance, energy, internet, solitude and celebration, large spaces and small: classroom as ecosystem.


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