Active Learning Strategies for Your Online Classes
Concurrent Session 4
This sesson describes how four active learning strategies can be used in the online context to engage learners. The strategies are Class Talk, Writing to Learn, Think-Pair-Share and Literacy Groups. Through these techniques learners use higher order thinking skills and interactions to dynamically construct their knowledge.
Active learning strategies center around the learner. They are based upon constructivist theory, which states learners are co-constructors of the knowledge through interactions with each other and use of environmental stimuli. The idea of learning being an active process is not new. In his book, Democracy of Education (1916), John Dewey wrote about learning involving doing. Educational psychologist Lev Vygotsky espoused the value of collaborative exploration which is a foundation of modern day active learning.
In the 1990s active learning began to receive more attention in the higher education context. The Association for the Study of Higher Education (ASHE) and ERIC Clearinghouse collaborated to publish the book, Active Learning: Creating Excitement in the Classroom. The focus was on developing learners' skills to construct their knowledge by doing something, such as writing or dicussing.
1. Think-Pair-Share activity (with music) where group will be asked to walk around the room while music is playing. When the music stops the group members will chose one of the four strategies to share an example of with someone next to them. (5 minutes)
2. As a whole the group will be asked what active learning strategies they are using currently? (5 minutes)