Summary of My Learning Project

My Initial Thoughts…

When I first started my project I thought it would be a quick process and I would need to tackle another reno in order to make my hours! Boy was I wrong. This project took a lot longer to do and I am not just talking about the actual process. The research I needed to do before each step took a lot longer than I thought. I originally figured I would just watch the video and then tackle the task. In a way, it started like that. The first stages of this project were pretty simple and did not require much thought. Cutting the hole in the way was basic but looking back now some things were overlooked. I am not sure if I had found better videos if these things would have been caught but at the same time it was pretty specific to my project. For example, cutting the hole to account for the new drywall to match the line of the other opening that was already there. That is pretty specific to my job and it would be hard to find a video that matched that suggestion when at the time I didn’t even think of it. That is more or less just something I know now from experience. I think that wasn’t something I accounted for in the beginning. All the things I would learn from the experience of carrying out this project rather than learning from youtube. Don’t get me wrong, I learned a lot from the videos and research I did but because of the nature of the task I picked, I learned from the experience too. The process started off pretty quick but as I moved along, the tasks became more complicated and therefore more time consuming. I did not take this into consideration when I first began. Knocking down the wall also was a drastic change. We got to see how much it changed the space and it was the most dramatic change. The rest was minimal so that also made me feel like things were moving slowly.

How Things Changed…

Once I got into the process of demo, I realized how inexperienced I was and how little I knew about using power tools in a comfortable and proper way. The skill required for this takes time to learn. Once you are comfortable with a power tool the results become next level. I watched youtube videos to help me understand the process of running the plunge saw but yet I still felt uncomfortable. I understood how it worked but it wasn’t until my later cuts that I actually relaxed while cutting. I am not sure if this is unique to me or if this would be the case for everyone. We all learn differently and that is something we need to remember when we are teaching our students. I know that watching the youtube videos helped prepare me for using the powertools and made me more comfortable than I would have been if I hadn’t watched them. I just think the experience of actually using them was when my understanding really clicked. I relate this to students learning math through videos. They may need to watch it a few times in order to understand the lesson. Then once they think they have the understanding they could work on actual questions. Working through the questions would help solidify the learning. This is likely no different than if a teacher was standing up front and teaching. However, for those that need to reference the lecture a few times or watch it a few times to improve their understanding, they can by rewatching the video. With instruction done without a video students are required to absorb everything in one shot. That can be really tough for some students, especially those with special needs.

I also found that my learning from each phase helped prepare me for the next steps. I liked that I was able to focus on one task at a time and then enter the weekend ready to take them on. I found a routine in researching all week and then executing it on the weekends. It helped me focus on one thing at a time and really grasp an understanding for it. It wasn’t overwhelming.

As the process worked its ways into the final stages and the work became more intricate, I found I was relying more on our contractor for his personal experience and expertise. I watched the videos and learned how to use the tools but I had to be very specific about the tasks I researched. It was hard at times to find videos that explained exactly what I was doing. For example, making the thickened edge for my counter. I either did not know what to search to find the videos or they just did not have one that was close enough. So instead, I ended up asking Chris for some guidance. This may have just been because my project was so specific and it was hard to find something I needed. I think of students and how they might struggle with knowing what to search for or just not finding what it is they are looking for. This might be a skill worth teaching our students. How to properly search for information they are after. I was able to find videos explaining stuff close enough to what I was trying to do and then I just transferred that knowledge to suit my needs. This is a skill some students might struggle with and it is something to keep in mind when asking our students to learn through social media.

My Final Thoughts…

This project was so much more than learning how to build my breakfast nook. For me, I learned a lot more about how I need to help my students understand what I am teaching. Using technology is a great tool that can help further our students knowledge but as teachers we need to make sure we are providing opportunities for our students to add to that learning. This includes through experience, discussion with teachers and other students and also just practicing the skill. Understanding that some students may require extra time to re-watch lessons can help with understanding. We have known for a long time that students learn in different ways and I think sometimes we forget that when we implement technology. Some students may learn really well with the help of technology while others may struggle. I know at times I have thought, “Great, I used technology, the kids will be hooked!” but yet for some it becomes another obstacle in their journey. So making sure we still provide differentiation and supports even with the use of technology is important. I loved this project, not just because I gained some confidence when using power tools and I was able to create a functional space for our family, but because it has helped me grow as a teacher. It has given me a new understanding and approach I take when teaching in my classroom and how I can help the students on my caseload, especially since they are all requiring extra support or have special needs. I honestly never thought I would get so much joy out of a school project but this assignment was the best way to finish off my masters degree. Pretty sweet that my whole family gets to enjoy the final product too! Check out my Major Learning Project tab for my journey blog by blog! Thanks for following along, all the support was encouraging!

Early morning breakfast watching cartoons!

3 thoughts on “Summary of My Learning Project

  1. I loved following along this with project, and you totally hit the nail on the head with your reflection. This project is so much more about the metacognitive process of learning, rather than building a new design in our livingrooms/stairs. I really appreciated all the new tools you utilized in this project, and I definitely want to give a few a try myself!

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  2. Congratulations on finishing your Masters! Yeah! We are both celebrating. Great learning project What a great picture of your family bellying up to that sweet bar height counter. It has been interesting to try to learn through on-line resources. One would think it would be a snap – it is all out there for the viewing. Teaching and learning is definitely complex. You are so right that the learning projects help us to understand what it might be like for our students to navigate instructions and technology when they have no prior experience. Best wishes, Jocelyn.

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