A learner is like a river. It does not independently exist. It usually has stream and brook around it to keep it moving. A person can be an individual, having his or her own opinion, personality and style. But a learner cannot live without others. The learning process is growing fast and never ceases, just like the keep-moving river. When a learner learns, he or she cannot just live on their own knowledge; they have to learn from others, explore the information from outside, and connect with others to keep them updated. Just as mentioned in the video The Network is the Learning, “What we know today is not as important as our ability to continue to stay current.” It doesn’t matter how large the river is, how faster it moves. What matters is that the river keeps moving all the time, with the brooks and streams feeding into it. The ability to stay moving and interact with others really matters. It is the connections that help learners grow. Siemens mentions in Connectivism: A learning Theory for theDigital Age that “The connections that enable us to learn more are more important than our current state of knowing.” Coincidentally, the video also says the “The way we are connecting to other individuals is largely responsible for our ability to stay current in the field.” It seems that learners are growing with others together, and it’s a mutual process.
I am glad that I am also one of the learners in the information age where I can get easy access to various resources to help me learn. And learning from outside, or that kind of connection is no longer limited to the people around us. We can make use of the rich online resources to keep us connected in a very convenient way. A river can be a closed pond if it has no connection with the outside, a learner could be backward and obsolete if he is not involved in the interactive learning process.