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What is Methopedia?

Methopedia is meant as a resource for trainers who want to make their seminars more active by using different seminar methods. As educators we often wonder how active learning can be accomplished in larger groups, how online learning episodes can be organised during e-learning or what can be done to liven up a face- to-face seminar.

Methopedia provides different methods for that such as Webquest, Jigsaw Puzzle, ABC lists, station learning, or ice breakers like “Funky Questions”. In order to find the right method for a specific situation from over 100 possibilities, you can search in categories or combine categories such as “beginning of a seminar” and “online learning”.

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On the web and in the literature there are many such method pools, however they all have the disadvantage, that the user, i.e. the trainer, cannot change them. The methods in Methodpedia are therefore provided with a certain structure. However, the wiki allows everybody who registers, to change the description of the methods and enrich it with examples, comments, links, presentations or videos.

What is the idea behind the methods?

Many of us know formal learning as the passive reception of information in form of lectures, talks or presentations (which don’t get any better by using power point). Or as learning for an exam with a certain stress “kick” which helps us to finally learn the material. However after some time – hopefully after the exam – learners realize that they have forgotten a lot of what they had learned. Is there no other way?

Comenius already asked that question over 300 years ago:

“The first and last goal of our pedagogy should be to find and explore the teaching method where teachers need to teach less and students nevertheless learn more, where there is less noise in schools, less tedium and unnecessary effort, instead more freedom, fun and true progress.”

The methods in Methopedia and their adaptability by the user can make a contribution for learning to be more cooperative and individual and thus contribute to the overall learning progress.

The European Commission summarizes their position regarding learner-centred and cooperative learning in the report on “The use of ICT to support innovation and lifelong learning for all” as follows:

“The reviewed studies showed that learner-centred guidance, group work and inquiry projects result in better skills and competencies and that interactive forms of e-learning can lead to a more reflective, deeper and participative learning, learning-by- doing, inquiry learning, problem solving, creativity, etc all play a role as competencies for innovation…”.

We would like to invite you to the world of methods and collaborative learning. Try some methods, write us your opinions, tell us about your experiences and changes in Methopedia and tell your colleagues about it. We hope you find working with Methopedia fun and rewarding!


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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Methopedia (NG)


We started in 2010 with a wiki, switched to a CMS and now we are using a static website. But it is not static as before! With the wiki we have had many spammers as guests! In the CMS nobody want's to login and it was difficulty to manage the content for different languages. With the new solution we have the following advantages:

  • no target for spammers
  • linkchecker (many links over the time are broken)
  • now we include disqus, so you are able to comment
  • if your are interested in translating or improve the content, the source is available at https://bitbucket.org

The content is available at https://methopedia.eu

Your methopedia team

Podcasting


Picture for Podcasting

Image by the tartanpodcast (Access: 01.10.2009)

Short description

Podcasting is a way of publishing audio and video content on the web as a series of episodes with a common theme. Moreover this is supported by a so called "feed" making it possible for listeners to subscribe to the series and get new episodes when they are published. Podcasting in this activity is used as an alternative way to present a research assignment (Middelton, 2009: 149).

For more activities using podcasting see Middelton, A. (2009) Beyond podcasting: creative approaches to designing educational audio in ALT-J Research in Learning Technology.

Process description

  1. Listen to podcasts from other students and educators to get inspired.
  2. Discuss in class what makes a good podcast in relation to the assignment and make bulletpoints.
  3. Write a manuscript for the presentation.
  4. Record ...
  5. Export audiofile as an MP3 file.
  6. Upload file to a podcast webserver (Odeo or Podomatic).
  7. Learners can subscribe to a podcast made by their group using free programmes (iTunes, Ipodder) or any RSS aggregater.

See more under examples.

Required resources

  • Computer
  • internal or exteral Microphone
  • Software:
    • audacity (Windows/Linux/Mac)
    • Garageband (Mac-User)

Storytelling


Bild zur Methode Storytelling
Bild: Peter Koppatz (methopedia.eu)

Kurzbeschreibung

Story-Telling (deutsch: »Geschichten erzählen«) ist eine Erzählmethode, mit der explizites, aber vor allem implizites Wissen in Form einer Metapher weitergegeben und durch Zuhören aufgenommen wird. Die Zuhörer werden in die erzählte Geschichte eingebunden, damit sie den Gehalt der Geschichte leichter verstehen und eigenständig mitdenken. Das soll bewirken, dass das zu vermittelnde Wissen besser verstanden und angenommen wird. Heute wird Storytelling neben der Unterhaltung durch Erzähler unter anderem auch in der Bildung, im Wissensmanagement und als Methode zur Problemlösung eingesetzt.

Quelle: https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Storytelling_(Methode)

Ablauf

  1. Rufen Sie die Website auf:
  2. Definieren Sie das Thema für die Geschichten.
  3. Legen Sie fest, wie viele Symbole in die Geschichte einzubeziehen sind (je mehr, um so länger die Geschichte).
  4. Lassen Sie den Zufall entscheiden, welche Symbole verwendet werden sollen.
  5. Speichern Sie die Seite ab oder machen Sie ein Bildschirmfoto.
  6. Verteilen Sie die Aufgabe.

Benötigte Tools und Materialien

Offline

  • Würfel mit Symbolen
  • Wenn die Methode mit der Online-Version vorbereitet wird, können die Aufgaben vorher gedruckt und dann verteilt werden.
  • In ein Text-Dokument eingebunden, kann auch ein Termin und ein Abgabeort vereinbart werden (asyncrone Variante, Hausaufgabe).

Online

  • Smartfone oder Rechner, Browser
  • eventuell einen Drucker
  • alternativ zum Drucker, einen Austauschordner auf den die Teilnehmer Zugriff haben, um die Bildschirmfotos betrachten zu können.

5 Steps to Identify a Problem


Picture for 5 Steps to Identify a Problem

Image by Lincolnian (Brian) (retrieved on 01.10.2009)

Short description

This simple activity helps to define a problem (identify its roots, reasons) and propose a solution. It is particularly useful when working with groups.

Process description

The group should work for at least 2 hours, so they can complete all 5 steps.

Step 1:

Define the purpose clearly. What do I want to achieve? What will be the benefits? Is it possible to have multiple solutions?

Step 2:

Analyze the actual situation objectively. What are the pros and cons, advantages and disadvantages?

Step 3:

State the problem. What hinders reaching the goal?

Step 4:

Identify the symptoms and root causes. What is the source of the problem and what are its symptoms?

Step 5:

Provide a solution.

Required resources

Big and small sheets of paper, markers (different colors), pens.

Examples

  • Goal: I want to be healthy.
  • Situation: I work 14 hours a day, Monday through Saturday. I exercise 3 hours a week. I eat healthy foods.
  • Problem: I get colds very often.
  • Root cause: Fatigue lowers the effectiveness of my immune system.
  • Symptoms: Headache and low productivity.

Meta-Data

One may also use MindManager or FreeMind as an alternative for resources? -- Margit Scholl

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/5-steps

TopicMaps


Bild zur Methode TopicMaps

Darstellung im Vizigator (abgerufen am 31.10.2009; Link defekt, geprüft 2017)

Kurzbeschreibung

TopicMaps repräsentieren Wissensstrukturen (Ontologien), ähnlich wie Mindmaps. Die Grundbausteine dieser Strukturen sind:

  • (T)opics
  • (O)ccurrences
  • (A)ssociations

Diese Bausteine (TAO's) können in unterschiedlichen Schreibweisen (XML, LTM, CTM) erfasst und visualisiert werden.

Ablauf

Für ein gegebenes Themengebiet kann eine Ontologie erstellt werden, indem:

  1. Objekte aus der realen Welt aber auch Ideen notiert werden - ein Topic repräsentiert eine Idee oder ein Objekt durch ein Symbol, d. h. einen Namen.
  2. Occurrences, sind Konkrete Ressourcen zu einem Topic z. B. eine Website, eine Definition in einem Buch, ...
  3. Associations, verbinden Topics in dem Moodell und und schaffen ein Beziehungsgeflecht.

Benötigte Tools und Materialien

Offline:

Stufe I:

  • Es genügen Stifte und Papier.

Online:

  • Eine etwas andere Suche starten mit Ontopedia (siehe Beispiele).

Stufe II:

Es kann eine XML-basierte Form am Computer erstellt werden.

Dazu werden ein XML-Editor (z. B. XML-Spy, es gibt eine kostenlose 30-Tage-Testversion) [1] für die Erstellung und der Omnigator [2] (Open Source) für die Visualisierung benötigt.

Stufe III:

Online:

  • Installation einer zentralen Omnigatorinstanz im Intranet

Es können die Topic-Maps zweier Autoren oder Autorenteams im Omnigator zusammengeführt und damit Gemeinsamkeiten und Unterschiede sichtbar gemacht und diskutiert werden.

ABC list


Bild zur Methode ABC-Liste

Image by berwis/PIXELIO zugriff 28.09.2009

Short description

Associations are generated for a topic by using the letters of the alphabet.

Process description

  • The instructor provides a time frame
  • Participants write down their associations (starting with A/B/C/D etc) and then read them out to others

Required resources

  • Note cards
  • an online forum
  • a word processing software

Example

ABC-Liste for the topic "UML (Unified Modeling Language)"

A  - Aggregation
B  - Bar diagram
C  - class, collaboration diagram, container
D  - decission
E  - extend
F  - facade
G  - Generalisierug
H  - helper class
I  - interface, instance
K  - ???
L  - life line, lollipop
M  - modell, MDA
N  - nodes
O  - OOP, OOA
P  - package diagram, port, pin
Q  - qualifiying attributes
R  - reality, recursion
S  - sequenz diagram, stereotypes
T  - ???
U  - use-case
V  - ???
W  - ???
X  - ???
Y  - ???
Z  - ???

Comments

You know more than you think. Try making an abc list for nuclear physics!

Word formation excercise


Picture for Word formation excercise

Grafika: Amanda Alessandrine (Access: 07.06.2009)

Short description

The activity is a team or group building excercise that demands cooperation.

Process description

Participants are asked to form a word with their bodies - in this example it is done in the virtual world, Second Life with avatar-bodies.

Required resources

Bodies - and in Second Life a so called pose-ball to animate the avatar to stretch out the body.

Examples

In this example participants were asked to form the word MIL and take a foto of the result - to do that they need to learn about avatar movement, camera angles, photography and communication - thus learning about different functionalities of Second Life.

Comments

smiley

It's also possible in real life

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/word-formation

Wiki


Picture for wiki

Image by jaaron (Access: 01.10.2009)

Short description

Co-construction of knowledge with a wiki in order to enhance student’s collaboration skills and theoretical and methodological understanding.

Process description

You must have access to a wiki - see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_wiki_software for inspiration.

To facilitate the generation of wiki articles you must emphasise the relevance for the students - you also have to set up some specific requirements for each student.

Furthermore it is important to give the students the ownership of the wiki. They have to decide the structure, categories and design in order to give them a certain responsibility towards integrating the wiki in thier lives as students.

Required resources

Computer, internet access and a server for the wiki installation.

Examples

Comments

The wiki could be implemented in almost any educational setting to structure the students or pupils work. Choosing a wiki makes it possible for the students to access the articles anywhere and anytime.

image url: https://farm4.static.flickr.com/3158/2728668033_2cd12e5757.jpg

This example is developed in relation to the two EU projects COMBLE (https://www.comble-project.eu/)

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/wiki

Kim jesteśmy?


Kim jesteśmy?

Image by fisserman (Access: 15.12.2009)

Krótki opis

Przykład aktywności przełamującej pierwsze lody w kontaktach. Uczestnicy mają za zadanie opisać się w kilku słowach, co pozwala na poznanie i identyfikację grupy. Aktywność może być wykorzystana praktycznie w każdym typie kursu online.

Opis procesu

  1. Instruktor określa datę i czas spotkania online na czacie (biorąc pod uwagę dostępność uczestników).
  2. Instruktor przygotowuje listę wszystkich uczestników i wysyła ją emailem razem z informacją o spotkaniu i aktywności do każdego z uczestników.
  3. Na początku spotkania na czacie, instruktor pisze "Jesteśmy...".
  4. Każdy z uczestników, według listy powinien napisać dwa lub trzy słowa opisujące siebie (np. nauczyciel, super tata, itd.)
  5. Kiedy wszyscy uczestnicy się przedstawią, mogą zacząć szukać podobieństw między sobą.
  6. Każdy z uczestników powinien napisać co najmniej jeden opis. Następnie, instruktor może zakończyć aktywność lub kontynuować następną rundę.

Wymagane zasoby

  • dostęp do email
  • dostęp do chat rooms

Przykłady

Komentarze

Po zakończeniu aktywności, instruktor i uczestnicy mogą zidentyfikować kilka grup o podobnych opisach (np. nauczyciele, ojcowie, itd.). Następnie, instruktor może utworzyć kilka tematów dyskusji na asynchronicznym forum dla każdej ze zidentyfikowanych grup uczestników.

Opis aktywności został przygotowany na podstawie książki: "75 e-learning activities" R. Watkins'a.

PSI: https://psi.methopedia.eu/learning-activity/who-we-are