Personalized Electronically Blended Learning
“We are all mentors”
Personalized electronically blended learning (PeBL) is a learner-centred process that supports the gradual and deliberate transfer of responsibility between educator and student. It is a series of programs that allows for personalized and blended learning. During the session representatives from Eaton and Kenaston school reported on the success of the implementation of PeBL within their classrooms.
The session began by the presenter listing the seven foundational concepts of PeBL, which are: Relationships, Environment, Opportunities, Resources, Distribution of Leadership, Evaluation and Recognition. In terms of relationships this was seen in their schools where the grade 12’s were able to create and teach younger grades a lesson on communication. It was stated that we are all mentors. For environment, in their schools they have created a worker friendly and adaptable space for students with comfy chairs, couches and bean bags instead of the common desk and chair. They have many opportunities in their schools which provide voice and choice to the students. In terms of resources these allowed students to have a hands on approach to learning. For distribution of leaders students are able to become the teachers in their classrooms. Evaluation was done in terms of measuring growth in 21st century skills development. Lastly, the last aspect recognition was about celebrating strengths. All in all these concepts explained and represented what PeBL is about. By just looking at these PeBL seems like an innovative and engaging approach to learning.
Next students and teachers from Eaton and Kenaston school spoke about their experiences with PeBL. For the students they were able to create learner profiles where they can discover what kind of learner they are to optimize the amount of learning that can occur for them. A student described it as adaptable for student working styles. From the representatives I got the sense that PeBL allows for more engagement, character development, creation of a global classroom and the ability to take the learning home.
From the perspective of the teachers they said that for PeBL to be successful it requires a lot of collaboration, patients and time to for a shift in mindset to occur among students. Much like many other sessions during the Rural Congress it focuses on bettering education. It emphasizes on the fact that learning is unique from person to person. This is the most important aspect of education that our current schools system does not address. It is geared only towards certain type of learners and is not flexible for others. By listening into this session I get the sense that PeBL is able accommodate all types of learners.
To end, a striking comment that was made was that we are all handled a deck of cards in our life some of which may be knowledge or character and it’s not about what kind of cards your dealt, what kind of knowledge your given but how you handle it. This re-emphasizes the student driven learning that has been one of the topics at the forefront of many of the discussions today.
By: REKHA WHITTAKER