Knowledge is Power! But Then Why is it so Out of Reach? My Thoughts on Open Education

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Why Open Education is Necessary

With our technology today and the need for everyone to have a right to a better education, we should be looking at this time as an opportunity to share our knowledge and learn from each other.

  • The cost of materials for students- Textbooks and other resources can be very expensive. Many schools and universities expect their students to not only pay for their tuition, but to then spend thousands of dollars on material. This can make or break someone who is just starting off away from home. If schools had access to free online resources, many students would have one less thing to worry about.
  • The cost of materials for teachers and schools- This also goes for educators who spend hours of their valued time making worksheets and lesson plans for various reasons. Some teachers don’t have the money to buy everything online. Libraries also don’t have every resource because of budgets so many teachers buy learning materials using their own money. With open education resources, teachers would be able to share their content so it is more accessible.
  • Knowledge is power! With open education, we can keep learning from others by sharing what we make and what we know. Many people don’t have access to education because it is so expensive or not accessible. If resources are online and free, it allows everyone the ability to learn what they want.
  • Sharing and collaborating makes the world go around- When a creator shares their content for free and allows others to be creative and adapt it, this starts the spread of something great. We can take a resource and collaborate to make it even better. It is interesting to think of what could be different in the world is everyone was allowed access to someone’s work. Creativity shines with sharing and collaborating.
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My Personal Relationship with Open Education

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Some teachers do not like sharing anything they make or find which at times is troublesome. I understand why some teachers do it since it is very time consuming making and finding resources. ( I don’t mean sharing paid resources that are copyrighted, but resources that are free or ideas that they have). I tend to think that as an educator, we want what is best for our students and their education. If that means collaborating and sharing resources, and links to ideas and websites, I am all for it! If there were more OER online for teachers, my job would be so much easier. My bank account would be a bit bigger, I would have more time to focus on other parts of my job and my time at home. I would be more willing to share my resources I make not only with my colleagues, online as well if I know my resources are there to let others be creative.

The things we could accomplish with open education resources as educators is beyond my wildest dreams! I do hope to keep learning and sharing about this OER’s so more people know what it is all about. Knowledge is power!

5 thoughts on “Knowledge is Power! But Then Why is it so Out of Reach? My Thoughts on Open Education

  1. I always forget how difficult it can be to find resources in French. Our school division removed core French due to the pandemic, and then this September they didn’t even bring it back. They believe that due to the number of French immersion schools now available in the city, if parents want French as an authentic part of their child’s education, then they should be immersed in it, not just learning it for 40 minutes a day three days a week. Finding resources can be a struggle sometimes, however I can’t imagine having to translate it!
    I see where some teachers are hesitant to share their lessons and units that they have created themselves because they put so much time and effort into it. I see the attraction of selling items on TPT especially in the united states where teachers often have to work second jobs just to make ends meet. It can be a true source of income. However if open education was adopted worldwide, school divisions could allocate their budget towards teacher salaries, and hiring more teacher and educational assistants instead of spending it on costly materials that eventually expire.

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    1. That’s very interesting about core french being removed. It does make sense, I even find my students are a bit lower in French due to not being immersed enough during remote learning.
      I really appreciate the teachers that take their time to make the nicest resources. I wish I had that talent, I’m jealous!
      Yes, open education would definitely solve many issues!

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  2. Open education would solve a lot of issues for immersion teachers that’s for sure. I taught at a dual-track school for 8 years and some of my best friends are immersion teachers. I used to joke with them that they should create the content and I will format it, and we would basically make a killing on TPT really fast. Early retirement right? But definitely not fitting under the open education philosophy. I can see the need for both, and how TPT gives quick and easy access to our constantly demanding jobs. Finding quality resources in English is tricky enough, let alone finding immersion ones. Always a challenge, and I was very fortunate to work with some pretty amazing immersion teachers that created some fantastic things!

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