Thursday, May 24, 2012

Engaging reluctant learners

This was a session facilitated by Clarrie Yates on 23 May 2012. I live blogged as we went along, but Blogger seems to have removed the automatic save function - or maybe something else happened! Needless to say, I lost an entire hour's blogging! Ah well, when it works it works well, when it doesn't it makes you want to tear your hair out and test the aerodynamics of your computer.
So, this will be a rather abbreviated overview of the session rather than anything more in depth. Instead I would encourage you to dip into the recording of the session here:

If you are interested in continuing and contributing to the the discussion
  • Clarrie has created a pretty extensive resource with suggestions and strategies here:;
  • The forum below the event overview has some super contributions from Vicki, Heather, and Brenda (; and
  • Wi has started a discussion forum around the subject ( to which Melvin has contributed.

The session was very worthwhile with a large amount of discussion and sharing. If you are looking for some ideas around why learners might be reluctant  and/or disengaged, reasons why this might happen, and some strategies as an educator that you might apply, this is a useful recording and set of resources to dip into.
It would be excellent to hear more about how students might be empowered - perhaps through the design of the course, and shifting the current paradigms of formal versus informal learning. So please jump in with experiences and ideas of your own, as well as links to resources.

A bored person (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


austinhduggan said...

Have you tried engaging students using ipads? For isntance I'm using an app called Nearpod and launching presentations from it. It's awesome, I think teachers should try it, and it's on the app store for free!

Hazel Owen said...

Hi Austin, and thanks for your comment and suggestion. I think there are a wide range of tools available that might help empower and motivate learners. However, I would say that any use of tools would need to be preceded by some strategies that would help figure out why the learners are disengaged, while also building a relationship that will support the student as an individual getting to know them. Then gathering feedback around suggestions and ideas students might have around how they might want to learn. This would be followed by a creative course design process, one element of which might be the use of iPads.

Having said that, I had a look at Nearpod, and it does look impressive - so thank you for the recommendation :-)