July 29, 2015

Where are you from?

For this week of CLMOOC I've been thinking about how you geo-locate yourself. Since leaving my birth home I've lived in 11 different locations. So when I get that question "Where are you from?" I have to pause. I know where I live now, I know where I was born and I know my second home....so I’ve created this map* to geo-locate my life from my history. The different colours are true, they represent the physicality of these 3 places. From dairy farming, island life (with sea being the dominant feature) and the desert, arid land where the impact of man are faint. The striking long mountain range is the backbone to this imaginary land. It has so many stories that I don’t (yet) understand. The orientation of the maps have been changed. Where would we be without North? Our own (dis)orientation happens most frequently when we fly from one place to another. Particularly for long haul flights where the body clock just can't catch up. Technology might give us a short cut for many things but our body soon tells us the true orientation.

I am picturing these lands when they were all “national parks”. The national parks under the surface of the water that we see here are so vast and in many cases, not well understood. They are the water of life.

How do we geo-locate within the Connected Learning MOOC? As humans we seem to have this need to have a reference point and align events, people and situations in our life. The first week of any course has that  introduction element (or an untro!). Otherwise disorientation can impact learning and we are left floundering like a faulty compass. Gaining our bearing is so important in this learning context. Once we find 'our place' we can start to participate. Those that never find North in the picture soon disappear off the radar. Unless you are a lone ranger. The lone ranger is not always impacted by others around them but continues to function in line with basic requirements of survival and rules of harmony.

Lone Ranger methods:
In lone ranger fashion I went to the last link on the "Additional Ideas" for this week to get ideas from Map Stack (not really functional for my side of the world). I started with Google map images, used Snipping Tool to wack them into Powerpoint and then played around with as many tools as I could. By grouping them together and saving as a single jpg picture I ended up with MyMap. A shorter version is on my Tumblr blog. http://etalesandstories.tumblr.com/post/125340974950/how-do-you-geo-locate-yourself-this-imaginary. I'm still working out how Tumblr works in with my main landing page here.