Monday, January 14, 2013

ETMOOC- Redfining Success...



Hello, my name is Sean Grainger. I'm in my 19th year of learning as a teacher having experienced a diverse range of assignments. I am currently a Humanities 7 teacher at Glendale Sciences and Technology School in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada. I am also my school's vice principal, (a newly re-tooled K-8 inquiry-based, science and technology focused school.)

Before returning to Glendale this past fall, (I was Glendale School's counselor three years ago,) I was a vice principal in a K-5th grade school here in Red Deer, and before that I worked with kids from at-risk environments in Red Deer Public School District's Alternative Programs for eight years. My career started at Tall Cree Indian Reservation in the far north of Alberta at the end of a four hour drive on a gravel road once the pavement ended. I worked within three First Nations communities for a total of six years before moving to Red Deer. My time working with First Nation's people taught me so much about learning and living; it was a priceless way to begin my career.

I am a firm believer that, more often than not, the path chooses us. If somebody asked me how I thought my career would go when I left undergraduate school, I would not have predicted my story would be told the way it has evolved. I appreciate this. More than anything about teaching and learning, I appreciate the fluid, organic and unpredictable nature of my job... there is a new and different challenge everyday for which I am thankful. I consider it a giant privilege to be immersed in the learning process everyday, and I am blessed to be surrounded by kids who are inquisitive, intelligent and eager to learn with me.

Joining #etmooc is another opportunity for me to learn from others, and to share experiences with them. I have been blogging for three years, and I've been a fierce consumer of educational technology since leaving graduate school in 2006. My learning spirit was rejuvenated there when I was introduced to blended learning through my cohort-based experience at City University, Bellingham, WA. I went to grad school because I wanted to... I had no tangible goal other than to learn on a different plane. I participated on my terms, and it is the most engaging and enlightening formal learning experience I have had. My work at City U opened many doors, but even if it hadn't, I was successful because I was there on my terms. I think I will be successful as a member of #etmooc for the same reason.

Beyond #etmooc, the concept of massive open online courses in general is very intriguing to me. This is my first participatory experience, and I am seeking insight into how MOOC's can benefit learners who don't have the privilege of geographic location, financial means or time to participate in face to face, traditional learning institutions.

Looking forward to connecting!
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