Benefits of using Twalks as a learning space

 

The benefits of using Twalks as a learning space are many and may be different depending on the contexts in which the twalk is used. As a participant-centred model of learning, the benefits will be different for each person.

Learner benefits

  • The twalk is a natural conversational space;
  • The learner directs their own conversations within the context of the twalk theme and objective, and the questions and topics used to provide structure;
  • The use of a walk through a physical environment brings familiarity and helps to put the learner at ease making the activity conducive for thinking and learning;
  • Walking and talking outside means conversational groups stay small, making for intimate conversations;
  • The physical environment should inspire students to think creatively – the landmarks and objects they encounter can be used to frame discussion;
  • The use of tweetchats within the twalk concept means the learning groups have an audience for their own ideas, and vice versa, and this allows groups to compare their thinking, and to give and receive feedback;
  • The idea of learning network is evident in both the physical and social space, bringing the advantages of networked and peer assisted learning to the twalk;
  • Ideas can spread virally across the walking groups as well as across the Twitter groups;
  • The learner is expected to record their conversation through tweets and photographs so that they can revisit these later and the incorporation of notemaking in this way reflects real world behaviours.

Teaching benefits

  • The Twalk creates a different learning space and, as such, can be used to challenge and inspire the students in a different way;
  • Dependency upon traditional content and forms of content is disrupted by the Twalk learning space. It is evidently experiential and participant-centred requiring a different type of response and different types of interactivity;
  • The space is essentially inclusive as it is difficult to walk alone – there is an obligation to take part;
  • The idea of walk is generative – students have to use what they have learnt and, through conversation, have to apply it to the questions and challenges set out.

This is part of the Twalk toolkit