Rhizomatic Learning

RhizomesPhoto Credit: Venessa Miemis via Compfight cc

Dave Cormier was the guest speaker last week in class and he lit up the chat on blackboard with the idea of rhizomatic learning.  The conversation was difficult to follow with everyone’s ideas about how classrooms function now versus how they could function with proper use of social media and open education.  On his blog he talks about “the whole idea of rhizomatic learning is to acknowledge that learners come from different contexts, that they need different things, and that presuming you know what those things are is like believing in magic.”

The quote really made me think about the idea of differentiated learning and as a student services teacher/learning resource teacher writing individual program plans.  Would rhizomatic learning for students be an individual program plan (IPP) which the student writes themselves? An IPP is written by a support teacher with the idea the individual student needs different learning outcomes.  Knowing the background information about the student when writing the IPP is acknowledging the learner has different needs. I know it is unreasonable to have an IPP for each student in your class, but a classmate did mention learning contracts.  Are learning contracts IPP’s? Can a student meet the required outcomes of all the curriculums set out by the province through a learning contract? What would the reports to parents look like in a rhizomatic learning environment? Who is accountable? As an adult I am accountable for all of my learning in this class.  In the education system we have today, society blames the schools when the students do not meet standards.  We have a cookie cutter system and everyone must learn ____________ in certain grades and we keep pushing them through the conveyor belt of school or the factory as Dave Cormier referred to the current system.

Justine Stephanson mentioned the Reggio Emilia approach.  The quotes which stood out in her mind reminded me of being a parent and just watching my child as she plays and discovers the world around her.  From the infant stage, children are able to construct their own learning and I as a parent am there to foster and mentor that learning.


About Candy

Mother, Wife, Elementary Teacher, Grad student. Looking foward to using this blog as a reflection of my professional learning.
This entry was posted in ECand I 831 Reflections. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Rhizomatic Learning

  1. kennanelson says:

    Learning contracts provide accountability for both the teacher and the students. It breaks a barrier of “unknowing” and creates opportunity for the learner and teacher to move forward. With the learning contract would you want to involve the parents in the process?

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