Posted to Diigo 06/15/2010

    • Just as two pieces of music can not be enjoyed at the same time, one can not comprehend or appreciate the beauty of the moment without a clear focal point or “central motive
    • Abundance of vacant space allows for the clear existence of a focal point and the participation of the viewer to complete that which has been left incomplete or that which is only suggested
    • there is no place for clutter and the superfluous as these harm clarity and introduce confusion
    • The key idea here is simplicity, of course, but also the idea of embracing change
    • The idea of emptiness itself, then, also hints of the potential for growth and improvement and possibilities
    • Our ideas and our presentation — whatever kind of presentation we’re talking about — also must change to fit the time, place, and occasion
    • “Uniformity of design was considered fatal to the freshness of imagination,”
    • Designs which are asymmetrical are more dynamic, active, and invite the viewer in to participate. An asymmetrical design will lead the eye more and stimulates the viewer to explore and interpret the content
    • Asymmetrical designs may evoke a sense of flow or movement
    • This kind of active engagement on the part of the viewer may lead to better recall of the content
    • It’s important to remember that harmony is key and can be achieved in an asymmetrical design when care is given to achieving balance among the elements
    • I wonder if there’s really a need for “educational” technology anymore?

      Does the artificial classification of hardware, software, web applications and the rest as “instructional” (with the inevitable conclusion that rest of the stuff is not) just get in the way of the basic idea that almost any technology could be used for learning?

    • We say we want students to be able to communicate and collaborate, to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills, and to become creative and innovative in their work.

      Do we really need special “edtech” to make that happen?

      Or just a better understanding of how people in the real world are using all kinds of technology to improve their personal skills in all those areas and how to help our students learn to do the same.

    • Maybe, just like our tech standards that linger from the previous century, the whole concept of “educational technology” is outdated and obsolete.
    • what to do with those students who resist participating in groups
    • They’re those independent learners who participate in group activities reluctantly and almost always prefer to do it alone. Should we excuse them from group work when they want to go it alone?
    • If they don’t learn well in social contexts, then why should we place them in situations that compromise what they’re going to learn?
    • Aren’t we doing students a disservice if we don’t help them develop the skills they’ll need to function effectively in groups?
    • when we have students working individually, we aren’t in the same quandry about those learners who really do better when they are working with others
    • What if one of them should approach us with a request to work on the project with others? Would the request take us by surprise?
    • In reality students need to be able to learn individually and in groups, as both situations will confront them in their professional and personal lives
    • They may prefer one learning context over the other, but as I used to tell my group-reluctant students, “You don’t have to like group work, but by golly you need a repertoire of skills that enables you to learn and work constructively in groups.”
    • learning is social, or communal in nature.

      See, my contention is that learning is communication, and that communication requires language, and that language is socially negotiated. By that, what I mean is that words are just sounds. Sounds that convey meaning. And they are arbitrary. We call cups “cups” not because they possess any inherent cupness, but because, over time, and due to popular usage, the word “cups” came to be linked with the concept of a particular kind of container that you put things, usually liquid, but sometimes cakes and other things, into. Words gain their meaning through social processes. Specifically, when people, enough people, use them to mean certain things, then they have that meaning. Without that social negotiation of their meaning, they mean, well, nothing.

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Michael Rowe

I'm a lecturer in the Department of Physiotherapy at the University of the Western Cape in Cape Town, South Africa. I'm interested in technology, education and healthcare and look for places where these things meet.