OER: So, I Thought I Was Good to Go – Part 2
By Eszti Major-Rohrer
It’s a new reality as I dive into my class. I wonder, are there any adjustments I need to make? No problem. With open educational resources, I can make changes on the fly!
Students arrive in the classroom 15 minutes early today. I’m ready for them – the computer and overhead projector are running, and I’ve already pulled up today’s class materials in the LMS. It is nicely populated with tips, links, videos, and practice materials for today. We will cover meeting etiquette in Hungary. I have a chance to chat with students as they settle in, talking about their class project. They are consulting with a local business, fascinating! It’s 3 pm now, I have everyone’s attention, and it’s time to get started: Let’s practice Hungarian survival phrases. After all, this is why we’re here: everyone needs to know how to ask for help or say “cheers” like the locals, right?
This sounds ideal, doesn’t it? Everything working, everything is in the right place, so all I have to worry about is whether students understand the basics of what it takes to conduct business in Hungary using the variety of OER resources I curated for them. Well, let’s take a look at what it took to get here.
On the previous Monday evening, I’m reviewing what I’m going to cover during my Thursday class. My list of curated resources is so helpful! A list with a nice mix of videos, articles, and blogs. I don’t have to worry about the licensing information since all my content matches the requirement of having CC (Creative Commons) or Standard YouTube licenses. So here I sit, at my desk, looking at the resources I have listed for meeting etiquette. While I understand that, in an ideal world, I already would have the links and content set-up in the LMS before the semester started, but the reality is that I haven’t done so. I have decided to populate the LMS with links before each class so I can keep adjusting information.
This allows me to make sure links are still active (I know all too well that something I curated months ago might not be available anymore) and it allows me to curate especially relevant content since now I know my students. As someone brand new to teaching, I realize the importance of understanding what makes my students laugh, what information they are keenly interested in, and what concepts are hard for them to understand. For example, one of the curated resources is a Hungarian language video presented by a young Hungarian college student, named Lidia. The students love her. Lidia has the genuine and innocent, almost childish, idea that she can teach anyone how to count to 20 in Hungarian in just 2 minutes.
Lidia has an ambitious goal, but since she seems to endlessly entertain my students, I will find more of her videos and add them to my class. This should be easy, right? I go down the rabbit hole of her YouTube videos. All of them have the Standard YouTube license, so I guess that will work.
Wait, what is this other video about Hungarian meeting phrases? It’s different. I listen, and I’m horrified. This video is recorded by someone who is clearly a non-native speaker, provides no translation, and is terrible quality. It satisfied my licensing requirements, and the description seemed very promising but, boy, did it fail my review! I climb out of my video rabbit hole and realize how much I appreciate the curated list of content I already have. I’ll stick to those.
Lidia made it into my classroom today. As expected, my students found her very entertaining. After a good laugh, we compared meeting etiquette DOs and DON’Ts between the USA and Hungary. The class flies by with enthusiastic conversation. They have learned a few basic ideas around what to do and what not to do when they meet with Hungarian businesses. And I will walk away knowing that the content I presented made them think, was engaging, and most of all: was vetted, available, and truly free for them to use.
I call this a win-win.
Interested in bringing OER content to your institution? Need help powering up your team to take the next step? Looking for a quick and simple way to demonstrate the benefits of OER to your institution’s administration? Then be sure to get more info on Ed Map’s OER Booster Kit today!
Did you miss Eszti’s first story on her teacher’s journey using OER? Check it out here: OER: Ready. Set. Start.