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Lifelong Learning – something to tweet about!

bb_twitterchatPost written by Carrie Leopold

Lifelong learning has become all the buzz. In schools and the workplace people talk about becoming and creating lifelong learners. What does that really mean? Is it a new way of learning? A new way of teaching? Or just some political jargon that no one really understands.

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up a definition online for Lifelong Learning and what I found was quite intriguing. I found a definition that described it as ongoing, voluntary, self-motivating, and the pursuit of knowledge. I also found a definition that described it as enhancing social inclusion, active citizenship and personal development and sustainability rather than competitiveness and employability. I even watched a YouTube video that compared one person who after 10 years of not being a lifelong learner had “a good smile” to another person who was a lifelong learner after 10 years was “rich, handsome, had a good smile and got all the ladies”. Hmmmm.

While thinking about these definitions, I was reflecting on conversations about motivating students. How do teachers motivate their students to learn? Is a part of lifelong learning teaching our students how to self-motivate? And can there be motivation with subjectification?

So, what does lifelong learning really mean? What does learning really mean? And how do you learn how to learn as well as what is the driving force behind the lifelong learning buzz?

Join us for the weekly #BigBeacon Twitter chat at 8 PM EST on 2/26/2014 to discuss lifelong learning.

I’m Carrie Leopold, Guest Host for this week’s chat, and I am the STEM Outreach Coordinator for North Dakota State College of Science and the Great Plains Girls Collaborative project lead. I work with students and teachers across the region and my passion lies with empowering girls and increasing their interest in STEM and other nontraditional fields. My latest project is working with a teacher and a group of high school girls who launched a startup club. Their first startup is a tidbits type of magazine for teen girls and I’m super excited to see it launch. On a personal note, I’m a mother of 4, finishing my PhD in Educational Research focusing on girls in STEM, and my goal in life is to change the world through an educational revolution.

How to Twitter Chat

If you’ve never Twitter chatted before, don’t worry; it’s very easy. First, get a Twitter account if you don’t already have one, and log in. At 8 PM ET on Wednesday go to and type #BigBeacon into the search box on Twitter. Thereafter all the tweets with the hashtag #BigBeacon will show up on your Twitter page. To participate, simply express your opinion by sending a tweet, and be sure to append the hashtag #BigBeacon so other members of the Twitter Chat see you are posting. Alternatively, automate the hashtag search and append feature by using the free service Tchat. For more information, read a longer post about #BigBeacon Twitter Chats here.

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