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twitter feed

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-07-19

Categories
diigo

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.

Categories
twitter feed

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-06-07

  • Mugtug | Browser Based Image Editing and Photo Sharing http://bit.ly/ca7pXs #
  • @johncarneyau Only now our tools allow us to do far more creative things than pen and paper did in the past #
  • @johncarneyau Then there’s not much difference betw a traditional teacher and a Steiner teacher? Teachers r teachers, technologies r tools #
  • @johncarneyau Not at all, there’s nothing in their philosophy negating the idea of using technology to explore creative learning experiences #
  • “Technology won’t replace teachers, but teachers who use technology in the classroom will replace those who don’t” – Higham (2007) #
  • Teaching and learning in social and technological networks – presentation by George Siemens http://bit.ly/cVIEQg #
  • Connectivist Learning and the Personal Learning Environment – presentation by Downes http://bit.ly/b5VKnK #
  • Trends In Personal Learning (audio and slides) – Stephen Downes http://bit.ly/cvsBsL #
  • “To ‘teach’ is to model and demonstrate. To ‘learn’ is to practice and reflect. Both imply participation in…an authentic CoP” – Downes #
  • On 7th grader #PLE video (http://bit.ly/9196KL) – amazing work, but don’t forget that the ToS mean she doesn’t own it & also can’t export it #
  • @jeffjarvis If you find yourself in Cape Town, give me a shout (I’m a huge TWiT and TWiG fan) #
  • @Czernie How bizarre, I just read that exact quote (http://bit.ly/9Ylxvb, slide no. 7) #
  • An Important Reminder about Feedback. Not only formal feedback is useful http://tinyurl.com/2udaokl #
  • Star Trek inspirational poster (humour) http://bit.ly/csbofi #
  • RT @allankent: @patrickkayton was killer finally getting to play with #cognician -> Looking forward to seeing what you build #
  • How Augmented Reality Helps Doctors Save Lives http://tinyurl.com/39ptoge #
  • @salfordgareth Can’t imagine not using GReader. Sync it to my phone and other offline readers all the time. Great 4 catching up and sharing #
  • Google Releases CloudCourse, an Open Source Learning Platform http://bit.ly/9rEB2y #
  • Google’s “Learning platform” clarified | John McLear’s School Technology http://bit.ly/c3iFqa #
  • BusinessDay – Software to help critical thinking http://bit.ly/aV8qYT #
  • Cognician – The original thinking guide http://bit.ly/9i0NqT #
  • @cristinacost #AMEE (http://goo.gl/TBYV) is my priority for 2011, but will do everything I can to get to SN & Learning http://goo.gl/SYS1 #
  • @doug_holton We’re enjoying #WPMU with #Buddypress finding it does everything we need it to & plugin ecosystem growing all the time #
  • @cristinacost @gsiemens Social networks and learning in 2011? Would love to play with… #
  • elearnspace › Einztein – company based on providing value to the OER of universities http://bit.ly/cUHgk1 #
Categories
diigo education learning students teaching

Posted to Diigo 05/23/2010

    • Connections is a about the process where the human mind takes the same letters of the alphabet but puts them together in a unique way to create something that far more compelling than the parts that went before. All the components for innovation existed. The magic was in the connecting.
    • do something that introduces new connections into your routine today.
    • I believe that the best way to learn about the world is by connecting with it
    • Before we work with our students on using these technologies, it is important that we work with them to be strong digital citizens
    • Work with your kids (as a teacher or parent) and teach them how to be responsible.  Teach them that it is okay to communicate when things are not great.  They are going on the Internet either way; will you work to help them prepare for it?
    • there appears to be an understanding of supporting learners in constructing their own meanings and understandings, rather than passively consuming materials
    • there is a real excitement about the potential of using multimedia for learning, once more not just consuming but creating audio and video
    • many teachers also seem to understand the Learning Management Systems and Virtual Learning Environments are for managing students, rather than providing an active tool for learning
    • Many teachers, whilst aware of the possibilities of new media, say the education system makes it difficult for them to change existing tecahing and learning practice. The reasons vary but include lack of infrastructure, lack of understanding and support from management, an overly prescriptive curriculum, lack of time, and rigid and individualistic assessment practices
    • Can teachers themselves initiate such change bottom up through introducing new technologies and pedagogies in their own practice. Can we drive change through modernising teacher training? How effective are projects in embedding change? How about ‘innovation champions’? Can we persuade managements of the potential new ways of tecahing and learning offer?
    • This is not going to be an orderly change from ‘old’ policy and practice to a shiny new world of technology enhanced learning. It will be messy. the problem is not the modernisation of schools, but rather that our schooling systems are increasingly dysfunctional within our society and increasingly irrelevant to the way many young people communicate and develop understandings and meanings
    • A mutual respect between teacher and student must be created to ensure that there is an opportunity for optimal learning
    • 1. Kids need to feel safe
    • safe to make mistakes, share thoughts, and know that their ideas will not be attacked or ridiculed
    • Trust must be apparent for students to succeed.
    • 2.  Students are cared for as people first
    • We always need to teach kids FIRST then curriculum.  Remember that.  Always.
    • If you enjoy what you do, have a sense of humour, and can laugh in your environment, you will do better and enjoy what you do
    • 3.  Opportunities for fun
    • Staff are encouraged to allow students to use Ipods in the classroom to not just connect with the outside world, but to also just let kids listen to music while they work.
    • Allowing students to use them responsibly in the classroom while respecting the learning of their peers is just one way we can create a better environment for students to learn
    • 4. Ideas and opinions are valued
    • Even the most famous inventors have failed before but we have to show students that even when they fall short, it is all a part of the learning process.
    • Kids need to have the opportunity to show their understanding in a way that is meaningful and relevant to them
    • 5. Opportunities for individualized learning
    • 6. Understand their knowledge and guide them to further their learning
    • I do not believe that “marks” are the best basis for this because they do not give any feedback for growth.  As teachers, it is our responsibility to give strategies to improve learning and help them further their own learning
    • 7. Student as a leader in the classroom
    • It simply can mean that they have the opportunity to show leadership in areas they excel and are passionate in
    • I appreciate learning at all times, even if it is from a child.  Not only will students appreciate that they have taught their teacher something, they will go out of their way to further their own learning to ensure that it happens again
    • 8. Opportunities for all to reflect
    • Time has to be given to students where they can self-assess their learning and put their ideas together
    • It is not the avenue that is important, but the opportunity
    • Find time in the busy school day to let students reflect on what they are learning
    • Through writing this post, I realized that this is not JUST an environment that we should try to create for our students, but for all those that we work with
    • When I design, facilitate, or moderate webinars I come from a social learning perspective, which means that participation is key. I get rather uncomfortable if a session is filled with me talking to slides because I feel I’m not engaging my learners, and King backs this up so neatly, saying

      “discussing the material with others actually transforms how we think about it… During such interaction with another, we clarify ideas, negotiate meaning, develop new skills, and construct new knowledge: thus, learning becomes a by-product of that interaction” (1997, p. 221).

Categories
twitter feed

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2010-04-19

Categories
learning

Posted to Diigo 03/31/2010

    • Learning can also occur in non-educational settings when it is better described as a purposive activity where it is useful to describe it as educational even though that may not be the primary purpose of that activity (lifelong learning or the University of Life?). In the latter case there are learners but no obvious teachers or educational resources as the learners draw upon many different people and things in their social or working environments.
Categories
diigo

Posted to Diigo 02/18/2010

  • The impact of digital tools on conducting research in new ways

    tags: education, research, technology, digital

    • we need to toss out the old industrial model of pedagogy (how learning is accomplished) and replace it with a new model called collaborative learning. Second we need an entirely new modus operandi for how the subject matter, course materials, texts, written and spoken word, and other media (the content of higher education) are created.
    • “Teachers who use collaborative learning approaches tend to think of themselves less as expert transmitters of knowledge to students, and more as expert designers of intellectual experiences for students — as coaches or mid-wives of a more emergent learning process.”
    • The bottom line was simple: professors should spend more time in discussion with students.
    • “Collaborative learning has as its main feature a structure that allows for student talk: students are supposed to talk with each other . . . and it is in this talking that much of the learning occurs.”
    • With technology, it is now possible to embrace new collaboration models that change the paradigm in more fundamental ways. But this pedagogical change is not about technology
    • this represents a change in the relationship between students and teachers in the learning process.
    • Today, universities embrace the Cartesian view of learning. “The Cartesian perspective assumes that knowledge is a kind of substance and that pedagogy concerns the best way to transfer this substance from teachers to students. By contrast, instead of starting from the Cartesian premise of ‘I think, therefore I am,‘ . . . the social view of learning says, ‘We participate, therefore we are.‘”
    • one of the strongest determinants of students’ success in higher education . . . was their ability to form or participate in small study groups. Students who studied in groups, even only once a week, were more engaged in their studies, were better prepared for class, and learned significantly more than students who worked on their own.” It appears that when students get engaged, they take a greater interest in and responsibility for their own learning.
    • “The scandal of education is that every time you teach something, you deprive a [student] of the pleasure and benefit of discovery.”
    • Like Guttenberg’s printing press, the web democratizes learning
    • Rather than seeing the web as a threat to the old order, universities should embrace its potential and take discovery learning to the next step.
    • One project strategy, called “just-in-time teaching,” combines the benefits of web-based assignments with an active-learner classroom where courses are customized to the particular needs of the class. Warm-up questions, written by the students, are typically due a few hours before class, giving the teacher an opportunity to adjust the lesson “just in time,” so that classroom time can be focused on the parts of the assignments that students struggled with. This technique produces real results. An evaluation study of 350 Cornell students found that those who were asked “deep questions” (questions that elicit higher-order thinking) with frequent peer discussion scored noticeably higher on their math exams than students who were not asked deep questions or who had little to no chance for peer discussion.
    • The university needs to open up, embrace collaborative knowledge production, and break down the walls that exist among institutions of higher education and between those institutions and the rest of the world.
    • “My view is that in the open-access movement, we are seeing the early emergence of a meta-university — a transcendent, accessible, empowering, dynamic, communally constructed framework of open materials and platforms on which much of higher education worldwide can be constructed or enhanced. The Internet and the Web will provide the communication infrastructure, and the open-access movement and its derivatives will provide much of the knowledge and information infrastructure.”
    • The digital world, which has trained young minds to inquire and collaborate, is challenging not only the lecture-driven teaching traditions of the university but the very notion of a walled-in institution that excludes large numbers of people.
    • If all that the large research universities have to offer to students are lectures that students can get online for free, from other professors, why should those students pay the tuition fees, especially if third-party testers will provide certificates, diplomas, and even degrees? If institutions want to survive the arrival of free, university-level education online, they need to change the way professors and students interact on campus.
    • The value of a credential and even the prestige of a university are rooted in its effectiveness as a learning institution. If these institutions are shown to be inferior to alternative learning environments, their capacity to credential will surely diminish.
    • Professors who want to remain relevant will have to abandon the traditional lecture and start listening to and conversing with students — shifting from a broadcast style to an interactive one. In doing so, they can free themselves to be curators of learning — encouraging students to collaborate among themselves and with others outside the university. Professors should encourage students to discover for themselves and to engage in critical thinking instead of simply memorizing the professor’s store of information.
    • The Industrial Age model of education is hard to change. New paradigms cause dislocation, disruption, confusion, uncertainty. They are nearly always received with coolness or hostility. Vested interests fight change. And leaders of old paradigms are often the last to embrace the new.
    • whilst the educational technology community has tended to espouse constructivist approaches to learning, the reality is that most Virtual Learning Environments have tended to be a barrier to such an approach to learning
    • In such an age of supercomplexity, the university has new knowledge functions: to add to supercomplexity by offering completely new frames of understanding (so compounding supercomplexity); to help us comprehend and make sense of the resulting knowledge mayhem; and to enable us to live purposefully amid supercomplexity.
    • A teacher/instructor/professor obviously plays numerous roles in a traditional classroom: role model, encourager, supporter, guide, synthesizer. Most importantly, the teacher offers a narrative of coherence of a particular discipline. Selecting a textbook, determining and sequencing lecture topics, and planning learning activities, are all undertaken to offer coherence of a subject area. Instructional (or learning) design is a structured method of coherence provision.
    • When learners have control of the tools of conversation, they also control the conversations in which they choose to engage.
    • Course content is similarly fragmented. The textbook is now augmented with YouTube videos, online articles, simulations, Second Life builds, virtual museums, Diigo content trails, StumpleUpon reflections
    • Traditional courses provide a coherent view of a subject. This view is shaped by “learning outcomes” (or objectives). These outcomes drive the selection of content and the design of learning activities. Ideally, outcomes and content/curriculum/instruction are then aligned with the assessment. It’s all very logical: we teach what we say we are going to teach, and then we assess what we said we would teach.
    • Fragmentation of content and conversation is about to disrupt this well-ordered view of learning.
    • How can we achieve clear outcomes through distributed means? How can we achieve learning targets when the educator is no longer able to control the actions of learners?
    • I’ve come to view teaching as a critical and needed activity in the chaotic and ambiguous information climate created by networks. In the future, however, the role of the teacher, the educator, will be dramatically different from the current norm. Views of teaching, of learner roles, of literacies, of expertise, of control, and of pedagogy are knotted together. Untying one requires untying the entire model.
    • For educators, control is being replaced with influence. Instead of controlling a classroom, a teacher now influences or shapes a network.
    • The following are roles teacher play in networked learning environments:

      1. Amplifying
      2. Curating
      3. Wayfinding and socially-driven sensemaking
      4. Aggregating
      5. Filtering
      6. Modelling
      7. Persistent presence

    • A curatorial teacher acknowledges the autonomy of learners, yet understands the frustration of exploring unknown territories without a map.
    • Instead of explicitly stating “you must know this”, the curator includes critical course concepts in her dialogue with learners, her comments on blog posts, her in-class discussions, and in her personal reflections.
    • How do individuals make sense of complex information? How do they find their way through a confusing and contradictory range of ideas?
    • When a new technology appeared, such as blogs, my existing knowledge base enabled me to recognize potential uses.
    • Sensemaking in complex environments is a social process.
    • Imagine a course where the fragmented conversations and content are analyzed (monitored) through a similar service. Instead of creating a structure of the course in advance of the students starting (the current model), course structure emerges through numerous fragmented interactions. “Intelligence” is applied after the content and interactions start, not before.
    • Aggregation should do the same – reveal the content and conversation structure of the course as it unfolds, rather than defining it in advance.
    • Filtering can be done in explicit ways – such as selecting readings around course topics – or in less obvious ways – such as writing summary blog posts around topics.
    • “To teach is to model and to demonstrate. To learn is to practice and to reflect.”
    • Learning is a multi-faceted process, involving cognitive, social, and emotional dimensions.
    • Apprenticeship is concerned with more than cognition and knowledge (to know about) – it also addresses the process of becoming a carpenter, plumber, or physician.
    • An educator needs a point of existence online – a place to express herself and be discovered: a blog, profile in a social networking service, Twitter, or (likely) a combination of multiple services.
    • Without an online identity, you can’t connect with others – to know and be known. I don’t think I’m overstating the importance of have a presence in order to participate in networks. To teach well in networks – to weave a narrative of coherence with learners – requires a point of presence.
    • the methods of learning in networks are not new, however. People have always learned in social networks
    • Education is concerned with content and conversations. The tools for controlling both content and conversation have shifted from the educator to the learner. We require a system that acknowledges this reality.

Posted from Diigo.

Categories
social media

Some activity at last

It’s been a pretty busy morning so far, catching up on all the feeds that I’ve neglected over the past month or so.  Here’s a list of a few things I found that might be interesting to you.

Found Academic Earth, an online repository of video lectures by international scholars, which could be a useful resource.

Did some research on a social networking platform called Elgg that could be useful for the department, rather than relying on a hosted service like Ning.

Read this short article on differentiated learning spaces at Eduspaces (also powered by Elgg).

Gave some feedback on the OpenPhysio paediatric assignment.

Read a little more on the idea of open research (or research 2.0, online research communities), which is an approach I’d like to consider for the writing of my PhD.

Came across this interesting article on Social learning at C4LPT, a social media platform for learning that runs on Elgg.

Found this presentation on Slideshare about the 21st century classroom.

Found an article on the principles of web-based teaching at the Canadian Journal of Teaching and Technology.

Downloaded an article called Beyond constructivism: exploring future learning paradigms from Pedadogy.ir.

Followed a few people on Twitter.