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Why Blended Learning is the right approach

CinderellaSomeone told me four years ago that books would become a thing of the past because Kindles, iPads etc. will make them obsolete. I did not agree with them at the time and to make matters worse I delivered a poor argument as to why I didn’t share their view. I remember that the comment left me feeling sad that my daughter’s children might grow up in a world where they would not be able to have the pleasure of choosing their bedtime stories from the bookshelf, looking and turning the pages of a beautifully illustrated fairy tale and running their noses down the spine of a book to smell the paper,

It’s funny the things we remember from our childhood, once we become parents.

Recently someone tried to convince me that training and classroom learning will be phased out in years to come by e-learning, honestly, next they will be telling me that online parties are fun.

In all seriousness this is a subject where I will need a lot of persuading as I work for a global training company (workingvoices.wpengine.com). Also, I struggle deeply with the notion that classroom learning will slowly disappear. Now, this time, you will be pleased to read that I put forward a convincing argument as to why I don’t think this is about to happen any time soon.

My two main points for feeling so strongly on this subject are firstly that people need people. We need to learn from each other, we need to watch each other, we need to debate with each other, we need to laugh with each other, we need to challenge each other, we need to motivate each other, we need to compete with each other, and we need to praise each other.

My second point is that a classroom gives delegates/students a structured environment in which to learn. Structure is an integral part of the learning process as it is time-dependent, it is motivational and challenging and it enables us to interact with others who have values and beliefs different from our own.

I recently read an interesting article in the Guardian by Alan Haburchak entitled I need real people to help me learn a language.” Article Image

Alan, adjunct professor at Columbia Journalism School, is taking part in the online language learning challenge set up by the Guardian. The challenge is to find out if its possible to learn a language only using online tools.

Click here to read Alan’s article: http://www.theguardian.com/education/2014/apr/01/i-need-real-people-to-help-me-learn-a-language#start-of-comments

 

I believe whole-heartedly in the blended approach to learning where classroom and online work in synergy with each other. Here at Working Voices we have recently developed a new product called Working Voices Digital. This new product is available online to all delegates who have attended one of our workshops. It replaces the need for written course notes and demonstrates succinctly the synergy between classroom and on-line learning.

WV Digital LogoWorking Voices digital replaces course notes with simple, short bite-sized videos that are available both on a computer via the Working Voices Digital website or via an iPhone or iPad app – just go to the App store and search for WV Digital”.

To watch one of these short bite-sized videos click here to watch Jay Rhoderick’s brilliant introduction to Working Voices Digital and Personal Impact.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Below you can find feedback from some delegates along with links to the videos that they are referring to…

 

Presentation skills – Think Like A Reporter – Jennifer Logue

 

“Thank you Working Voices Digital for my amazing course notes, I can watch them any time or anywhere on my iPhone and Jennifer’s journalist tips proved to be really helpful to me while I was preparing for a presentation the other day”

Monique, Re-Insurance broker, London

 

Personal Impact – Listening and NOT listening – Paul Hill

 

“I am finding my Personal Impact digital courses notes so helpful, I love the fact I can watch them on my iPhone. Paul Hill’s tips on listening have been invaluable to me as I have a very bad habit of jumping in with advice instead of listening to the full story – thank you”

Paul, Equities Trader, New York

 

Books

Personally I find these videos very useful and I sometimes watch them on my way to meetings to refresh my presentation techniques. It certainly beats rummaging around in my desk for some old scribbled course notes.

All these bite-size videos are available to delegates when they book on certain courses so if you are interested in accessing them, please do contact us at info@workingvoices.com.

If you have any comments to add to my blended learning blog and views on closing the classroom please do get in touch, as I would be very interested to hear from you.

Lastly, before I bring this blog post to a close I must tell you that my husband has just finished putting up another bookshelf in my daughter’s room for her ever-growing collection of books.

 

 

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