I can easily say that this learning project was by far my most favorite assignment I have EVER received in my four years of education.
When I began this learning journey, I mentioned that I had a list of multiple things I have always wanted to learn. I would scroll through Pinterest and constantly pin recipes I wanted to cook, scarves I want to crochet, paintings I want to replicate, make-up looks I want to try, etc. But never made time for ANY of it. My Pinterest boards were building and building, but I never gave myself the time to actually spend time learning any of these skills I so badly wanted to learn. This learning project was the exact excuse I needed to finally get started.
Now that I have spent multiple weeks learning to crochet, I can honestly tell you that I picked the right skill to learn from my list. I can say with confidence that crocheting is something I will continue to do, even though this learning project assignment is complete (this is both because I love it, and because I now have a cupboard in my place full of yarn that needs to be used). I find crocheting to be extremely relaxing and it is now my go-to for a relaxing evening. As a person who also has a really hard time sitting though an entire movie, I found this is my way to sit with my family to watch a movie while also feeling productive as I crochet away. I love the feeling I get when I can look and see what I, myself, have created.
As the purpose of this assignment was to engage and learn from technology, I thought I would give myself a little survey to see what I learned about myself and what I learned from technology.
I do not learn from: Reading
In the beginning, I skimmed a few blogs which tried to teach crocheting from written instruction and diagrams. I honestly could not learn from these at all. One of the major issues I had with learning from written text was that they would offer instructions using terms that I had never even heard of. Even with diagrams or images, it didn’t compare to actually having someone point to the term they are talking about and seeing the motions instead of trying to replicate what I think they mean.
I learn best from: Watching Videos
I love watching videos: everything about videos. I learn best from videos because they give met the visual assistance that I need. I love that I can watch what they are doing and follow along with them. I feel like it also taught me so much more because I was about to learn about terms and different methods that much quicker. There is also tons of videos, so i was able to watch numerous ones until I find ones that worked perfect for me.
What I look for in a good teaching video: Repetition & Exaggerated movements
When I learned the best was when the creator of the video did very exaggerated movements. When she was doing these movements, though extreme, I was able to follow along SO much easier then if they quickly did small, little movements. I also learned best when the crocheter would continue to the stitch over and over, allowing me to follow along through the whole process. That way I still had someone to keep me on track, even after I thought I had it down-pat.
What will make me shut off a video: Rushing & Fast-forwarding
I really struggled to learn from instructors who rushed through their videos. Especially when I was beginning to learn, the rushing really got me frazzled and thrown-off. They would often do a few stitches and then fast forward through the remainder of the row until they finished- this often left me lost and in the dust.
Where is the best place to look for advice/help: Crochet Bloggers
When I had questions or issues, I learned best from visiting top crochet blogs. I liked learning from these individuals, because they provided straight forward answers that always worked. They knew from experience and I always had success following their advice.
Where is the worst way to look for advice/help: Crochet Discussion Forms
While I enjoyed that crocheters came together a “tight-knit” community (hehe), I really struggled to actually learn from these discussion forms. Whenever I needed an answer, I
wanted one RIGHT NOW. I did not want to surf through question after question until I found one which actually related to my issue. I also found that with so many crocheters giving their opinions, there was often numerous different suggestions provided. This made me feel overwhelmed as I tried to select what method I thought would work best.
Overall, I had a very positive learning experience. I learned not only how to crochet, but how to learn online. This well help not only me in the future, but my students as I gained a better understanding of how technology can help them learn in the classroom. I have come so far, as both a crocheter & digital educator.
Thanks for following along in my journey of becoming a crocheter!