I just noticed that the most recent EDUCAUSE 7 things was very relevant to my interests. We’re looking at applications like Mobl21 to deliver IL instruction in the Mann Learning Technologies group right now.
I was realizing it had been ages since I posted anything but I just read an article in the Atlantic on What Makes a Good Teacher? that I thought was interesting. The writer was reporting on research done by Teach for America which was published in February as Teaching As Leadership: The Highly Effective Teacher’s Guide to Closing the Achievement Gap.
Looking at the advice, it’s not rocket science, but harder to remember do:
- Set big goals
- Always try to improve and reevaluate your teaching
- Make students (and family) a part of the process
- Focus everything on student learning
- Plan carefully and work backwards from your outcomes
- Work, work, work and never say die (or give up on students)
The teachers also used a number of things I’ve heard under other names: peer learning, checking for understanding, I do-we do-you do as part of active learning. According to their results, success breeds success as well which is also no surprise–if someone had run something and shown results before adn exhibited perseverance toward a goal then they were more likely to be successful.
Always when I read these things I think, “Oh, yes that!” Now, to do.
Talking about homecoming for his house. T-shirts as sign of passion, embodied history. Hunter S. Johnson
Sports Death (like “carpe diem” w/skull (Thompson T-shirt that’s famous). Remixed it to celebrate Henry’s last year-14 years. Sign can be scary w/o knowledge but if you engage with them about it you can find out a lot underneath thiat sign/surface.
Story about Peter (anon, composite?): HS student in upstate NY who has gone through a lot of trauma but good student and involved in a lot of things that let him interact with the world (avatar, flickr and newspaper uses his photos, talks to his girlfriend Mary Jane who’s an actress and he talks to her on the phone))
Spiderman! Familiar story-kid trying to make it in the world.
Bendis Spiderman on computer and info comes to him; early PSiderman had to be a journalist. Bendis Spidey-MJ protects via cell phone. Spiderman is in adult and kid networks (Ultimate series and X-Men)
Know that kids are part of all these worlds (preparing to be superheroes). They do so in their whole environment (don’t have to be a journalist; not just in classroom).
Circulate, connect, create, collaborate-tried to build it in and concerned with participation gap (emphasizing skills not technology) Designed things that don’t need technology. But it’s teachers who can start to require the habits of mind that will give them these skills. Part of “hidden curriculum.” Not just getting them in school but after school, libraries, other informal contexts
Participation and civic engagement
Bowling Alone-space for community, emotional connectivity, awareness of each others’ lives. WoW-new bowling league. WoW players go on to support other players not b/c addictedChilean senator-hardcore WoW player. Important for teaching collab. skills Sen Fernando Flores Labra
Participatory Culture: relatively low barriers for engagement; Strong support for sharing creations with others; Informal mentorship; members believe their contributions matter; care about each other.
Time article: How to build a student for the 21st century (boxed in my classroom and accademic achoevement) What about civic engagement, artistic expression, etc?
Living and Learngin with New Media
Geeking out (thinkiking, creating), Messing about (self actualisationa dn expression); hanging around (communicating and consuming content) (pyramid tip to bottom)
In politics: Wonk (how smart they are; how ignorant they are). Geek out for democracy. As a collective ability to change the world
- MyDebates–all kinds of games and information to change worls
- Like HP Alliance-DA’s Army for real world (working on Darfur). Using fan networks for RL action.
- Global Kids-machinima and SL for Darfur as well
Effect of young people’s engagement in politics impacted by Pbama’s campaign which
Can’t we be transmedia educators?
Civic mission of schools-students feel engaged when they can participate learn about participation and civic affairs by participating. Gone backwards in terms of engaging kids.
Scouting made a difference for him-first speaking and teaching he did.
Participatory culture gives kids chances that school doesn’t. School strangling participation out of fear. Blocking and filtering! 6th grade mentality of schools!
Our students know things we don’t. Kid says MC Lars sucks; MC Chris is good. Challenge of authority: Ask him how he evaluates. But teacher doesn’t have tme; neds to stick to schedule. Offline activity: Had kids send in ?s (not very good); MC Lars answered and gave good answers; kids amazed to see their ?s in teh world and they thought “we don’t sound so good”
Games not designed for school scheduling (MIT WoW pod conceptual art piece. )
Flexible, immersive time vs. school time
Scratch (Resnick and Media lab): basic coding system, trade code, learn code, and
Wants Learning Library to be that. they put some stuff in and we help build, spreading remix culture
Q&A: WoW curriculum Guild: Cognitive dissonance How to address complaints of it’s a violent game? Engagement is key (flow). We spend a lot of $ on sports, which are games where people actually get hurt. But we talk about them as ways to encourage leadership, etc. The War Between Effects and Meaning-article. Not can we get rid of violence; need art to reflect on aggression (Bible, Shakespeare, medieval ms, etc) Awareness of violence and cost that’s been paid; how to build mounring in games we play.
Media most powerful when it reinforces rather than tries to change belief. Playing games in culture that’s peaceful. . .
Education behind corporate in tools. What will future look like? What are we missing? No crystal ball. In convergence culture no mention of Web 2.0. Chilled by learning 2.0. Web 2.0 is a business model; we should not be educating consumers, trying to build comms from scratch when there are already existing comms. participatory culture has long history; don’t follow 4 yr business plan.
Research: Right now descriptive and not in lang that school board listens to. But lots of learning happening (let’s not shove that all into ed but don’t shut it out weither. don’t ay to kids that your interests don’t beloong in school and school doesn’t belong in yoru interests
Michele Honeyford from UIndiana working w/Becky Rupert from Aurora Alerntative HS and Rafi from Global Kds working w/ guy form SOmerville
Why Wikipedia: embodies participatory culture (all must believe htey are
Rheingold: “Wikis allow for collaboartive comms that can share knowledge nad ideas w” low tech. barrier
Contested in classroom spaces so brings otgther ?s about content, authority, bloacking/filtering. Also address participation gap (not just digital divide but access divide in learning how ot use and participate) , transparency problem (epistemology! authority, credibility, accuracy, what gets in there and how and why), ethics challenges (copyright, attribution, fair use etc)
2 examples of synergy and conflict:
Teacher listserv and conversation in Becky’s class
Becky taught 5 Moby Dick classes (1 twice , 2 and 3 currently)
Adapted from Rheingold’s Wikipedia exercise. Wanted kids to participate in conversation w/experts. Started on Bloomingpedia (city wiki-learned how to edit, what they wanted to put there, identity as a group). Then moved to Wikipedia (most of them already knew how to edit b/c they used to vandalize it (and got school banned which they had to negotiate). Had to read MD and then made small edits (but important in giving them some voice & agency)
Proximal level assessment of students’ collective
Students wrote answers to written question (35 min) about formalisma like networking, collective intelligence, etc
teacher listserv: what are your feelings about Wikipedia, go you let your students use it, and
discourage it (we pay for better content, not sure students know how produced or if reliable)
Student discussion: Lots of good free info. . .”some might be sily and stuff but a lot of times you’ll find something that’s true [if no one’s messed with it] . . .it’s always good to have that as a second source.” From probable vandalizer!
Not sure students understand Wikipedia? Students: Not just social networking “like MySpace”. . .”informational and intellectual networking”
“Networking is all Wikipedia is. . .sharing info in a dictionary-based setting” “Wikipedia is like a big library that’s constantly changing”
Assumption that reliability is not a concern: students: Fact check! If you’re going to contronute, fact check and then put it up
Wikipedia blocking-has no place in school. Students: Answer to what students are missing: fast access to lots of info; collective knowledge; chance to add to a body of knowledge that;’s biigger than they are. Like to be a part of something.
Listserv comment: check assumptions. If you’re a constructivist then that attitide is at odds. Why less suspcious of editors than volunteers.
Give and take process in editing (what if your contrib gets deleted). Negotiating to
Before silent observer, now tries to better the website.
Staed w/Plan A and moved to plan C. Plan A: Wiki Hack. Have them change info, screen grab and then see if anybody noticed. NML intrigued. Blocked so negotiated to open and couldn’t vanadlize after that. Plan B: Create page for class. Background of Wikipedia. Never cite it but use it as background source.
Pick a controversial topic (like Video Game Controversy). Talked to them about content flags and tabs like Discussion and History tabs (look at what was changed and why, issues discussed, etc). Students really got into so that was rest of the session (didn’t create their own page)
Screen grab: Shift+apple+4 (documenting moving source!)
Rafi-Global Kids (Media Masters after school program)
Less analysis and more on production & skills. Create wiki page on Prospect Park campus-framed as social justice issue. no previous entry even stub and lots of issues to talk about. Use the project to become aware of school history but also to give them skills to become critical media producers (point of program)
Focused on three skills: collective intillegence, judgment, networking. First talked about finding, evaluating and synthsizing info. Discussion of how they find credible info online, (heuruistics like .org,goc; layout). Looked at search methodology. Posted a question (what’s poorest state” which search strateguy os best. whoever finds answer first, what strategy do you use to find it.
Iterative process in searhcing; there is not one right way for every search. They had to change their assumptions
Biases in news articles-Al Jazeera, NYTimes, Guardian London
Then actual researhc process-use delicious (#phcwiki). Could use what other epople gathered
Used Etherpad to draft (like Google DOcs, more robust for live editing; each person’s contrbs associated w/a color and represented in real time–created motivation; same w/Google Maps; creating affinity spaces motivate contribution)
Ready to put in Wikipedia page and school was blocked for vandalism. Got around with mobile modem and each group input their part (into groups) under his IP.
Spent more time on process than prodcut. 6 wk project; half the time was building capacity rather than editing and figuring out community
students said it made production of knoledge more transparent. heatened–really hard to do do if people are doing it they must be doing it pretty well.
Three things: key themse:
- Desgn frameworks and principles
- Implementation strategies (dynamic)
- Challenges to exosting paradigms
PBwiki meshes with Ning
Private, less known, super public-starting with wikispaces, pbWiki etc then moving to Wikipedia
Worked w/Dianne ? to integrate Zooey’s Room (http://www.zoeysroom.com/) into classroom (particularly Fail & Fail Often module from Learning Library) at Esperanza Academy-all girls middle school in Lawrence MA. Zooey’s Room is STEM & media class in school
ZR is online comm and offline after school program; girls learned better in group collab environment so ed site
Begun by the two founders but comm run by student now (anon). 4 classes of 7th & 8th graders; 55 min each Mon (short! hard to geek out in 50 min). Time is biggest factor.
NML came in at end of project to encourage them to continue STEM curriculum building.
Teacher: Dianne felt nervous about using nmls and practiced on her own
Used fail & Fail Often module to investigate “Velocity, displacement, acceleration, distance” F&FO designed around nml Play (experiment w/world to problem-solve). gives them 2 games: Balloons and Gravity. Both games used these principles
Obj: Understandng how models can help understand world and how can games can help understand wrld. Instead of putting girls in front of computer, did transmedia storytelling (carried narrative through lesson). Started w/experimental-three a ball at them as they entered room. Then introduced 2nd bal. What is ball doing? how is ball moving? (physics in their own language)
Next activity: put your hands in the middle but you have to entangle (collective intelligence) (maybe wouldn’t have done two back to back in next iteration).
Scaffolded Dianne into understanding nml-after ZR sowed her, Dianne tried on her own (used simulation model)
Getting them to find it on your own-if posted on walls they gave back the same answer. But get them to associate w/their own lives. Sims game!
Advice: don’t rush it. 12 nmls-won’t know them all at once (you or students). integrate one at a time and make connections and revisit once you learn other ones (can see integration).
2 media maker and 1 Vinay created for STEM in Learning Library (Getting Fizzy With It)
Find a media element or challenge that inspires
Figure out what you earning objective is and how will you tell a story
Consider other elements beside tech
make a space that students can use their experience
Engagement-they did their homework afterward. Access issues-don’t have computers at home and couldn’t use them at school until they got a waiver. Game was fun & intuitive and they continued ot use it after
The Learning Library: Getting Fizzy With It
Needed a framework for Dianne b/c she had enought o do. ZR already had a framework: Tec-Trak model
Moving Getting Fizzy With It into Zooey’s Room
Story to set the stage (intro terminology)
Activity-online and offline (bringing in other games that they play and then they get points to enter into ZR system)
Problem w/ZR Tec-Trek framework: too linear; no user feedback; more points driven; no place for girls to give feedback to one another
LL: gave place to put open-ended question (less test-like); translate written story to video (used extranormal and provided transcript; also showed diet coke and mentos experiment -EEpy YouTube video; PDF of bubble formation and get them to create an experiment that other people can do); could do several online activities. Embedded questions throughout not just beginning pre-assessment and final embedded question to do overall reflection.
Part of community, remixing, learning. Didn’t need points and prizes. got a big thrill out of bing eduators, mentors. How can I create and mentor?
To move from informal to informal-had to put content areas and skill levels
They had the girls find games that could be used for physics teaching (portal, launchball, etc). A lot of these don’t have lesson plans around them. Try storyboarding them. Integration of media literacy within curriculum
Assessment-“action research for kids”
Drag and drop challenge builder. Challenges combine different types of media into a single lesson (module, etc)
ASCD.org “whole child education” healthy, safe supportive ways of engaging and challenging kids; problem-based and project-based learning. First time he’s seen challenge-based learning
Engaging students in the process-released this first to 7th graders and got lots of feedback and material.
- Assessment & testing as participation (treat as discourses)
- Multiple levels of assessment & feedback (align through immediate, close & proximal activity)
- Standards & skills as formalisms (must enlist b4 enlisting appropriately or correctly)
- Close-level reflection guidelines
Rationale: Participatory assessment
Teaching to the test is as useful as the tests are meaningful (NCLB showed external tests aren’t meaningful for teachers); bigger problem for
Participatory a. is key (must interpret participation b4 assessing proficiency)
Iterative refinement/feedback is most effective
Theory can only be found in efforts to reform practice
Prior research in science ed-working to align trad assessment with 90s theory (started work at ETS, NSF on Genscope Genetics & Classroom of the Future)
Quest Atlantis (Baron etc). They are presenting at Games for CHange
Iterative feedback creates “echo” on achievement measures
Current research: Teacher’s strategy guide, Quest for Atlantis, Global Kids & Learning, HRheingold’s Social Media Classroom, etc)
Identified formalism and aligned activities over time General principles emerged
Participatory Assessment (trying to apply participatory & social theories to assessment motivation)
- Enact v. implement (complete a curricular routine in contect. diff entre indiv. & communual understanding)
- Aggregated concerns averages across individuals
- Formalisms (participatory reframing of skills & standards)
- Artifacts (participatory reframing of any student produced work) Test is artifact too (bizarre artifact but still)
- Implications: ahift from indiv. expression to community involvement (not everybody must participate
Social contract fosters motivation and cascading success (worthwhile practices, participation, curriculum increases indiv, communal and aggreagetd achievent on tests)
Assumptions: Learning is primarily social change. All assessments have formative & summative functions (blows up distinction between the two); assessment & test are a type of discourse
Formative functions must be protected; focus on these first
Five levels of a. (works across several levels and
- Immediate: event-oriented guidelines (interpret how curricular activities are being enacted
- Close Activity oriented reflection
- Reflect on how currcular activity worked
- Proximal: Proficieny oriented rubrics (assess indiv, proficieny using artifacts) increasingly formal activities (does artifact
- Distal; standards-orietnted assessments (assess proficiency solvng new problems)
- Remote-level assessment: Achevement-oriented tests (measure attainment of broad proficiencies) Skeptical about utility of these things
Content Knowledge as formalisms:
Treat skills & standards as formalisms (enlisted when participating in knowledgeable activity–misconceptions and such; basis of good teaching which often lost sight of during testing). Boundary objects that traverse levels (??)
students must enlist initially before enlisting appropriately (don’t assess appropariateness prematurely and close of initial enlistment) Diff entre shutting down in the face of ?s
- Close-level communal reflection on prior activities (natural btween
- Prximal & distal classroom assessments
- Remote level assessment summative but formative for high level stakeholders
Some initial enlisting may seem/be resistant (I don’t know what that means BUT)
Three is the magic number” article
The “5 posts a day” problem-can’t quantify. Teachers know it when they see it. Get buy in once they see it.
Fostering conversations about assessment is important and then ideas filter down
How to foster worthwhile participation? Will show examples
In Your Classroom
Identify one specific activity (one you like & want to enhance; invovles new practices & skills; one you’ll do again next year); Activity has to generate an artifact and they have to be accountable for it
Nuts & Bolts
Frst define formalisms (new & traditional literacies e.g. annotation & genre)
Align participation across iterative cycles
Focus on one central level (first cycle: immediate (what are you doing in activity CLOSE reflect on it proximal how to change on next one) (second cycle: close PROXIMAL distal- then start from what do you want them to know
Ex start on having kids work on artifact then align w/formalism; discussion and only then they go onto the ning. Public and participatory forum improved class work (quality & quantity of enlistment)
Practical implications: How to make this scalable? Teachers don’t have time or motivation. This what that group does and he’s not sure how to scale.
Moby Dick 1 exxaple: didn’t know what formalisms were. went into classroom 2 days after getting big book. 2nd time knew: wrote them on the board. wrote on board what does this mean to you? rvisted the formalis throughout and kids produced artifact (indiv or in small groups) and then shared it amongst each other. One activity: take 1 page of Moby Dick annotaate & ornament (figure out hard words & make personal connection) (annotated page w/stcky notes in public hallway one time and then in Ning. then structured discussion on experience (what did and didn’t you like? and had them enlist the formalisms) how might it have done differently Not just quizzing them but asking them to critize activity What did you learn about? How did annoating and ornamenting elp you learn X? What new insights did you have etc
Immediate conversation after writing that down and share as class
Don’t grade the writing but use as prompt Don’t penalize for No or none; single one word answers
Made a lot of mistakes-enactment wrong in TSG. Boring trad activity-present your work. As soon as it got trad kids dsengaged. schooling is compulsory but participation is optional. Students have learned that participation will show up in assignments later
Purposes for reading formalism-student didn’t know what it meant at first but students talked through it. If you are going to hold students accountable for knowing what close reading is you have to give them an open adn safe place to discuss it
Designing close level assessment
First define formalisms (new or trad)
generate a seroies of ?s (critique and foster cirtical discosue)
Align w/immediate level activities (use tech language of domain) Not constructavism; enculturating students into domain outside the classroom
Align with proximal rubrics
Enacting close levelassessment:
Implement immediately after activity; immediately discuss non-summatively; don’t grade; and indirectly support indiv understanding
Changed a&o assignment. Scanned and put illuminated texts on ning and then used them to engage in close reading of text. more collective sense of what text was about (and changed how they approached it-collectively)
Enacting Imeediate-level event guidelines: structure enactment around formalisms; iterativly refine; activity enactment & feedbacks
- Social networks remediate existing literacies and texts
- New media affords public & persistent discourses
- Schools should foster equitable ethical & transparent participations in NML
- Classrooms must directly support participation
Greg Wiggins Understanding by Design (will come out w/something as practical)
Measuring New Media . . .Not So Fast
Email him email@example.com for papers
First session (hashtag #nml09)
- Low barriers for engagement
- Strong support for sharing creations w/others
- Members believe contributions matter (Classroom 2.0)
- Care about others’ opinions of self and work
- Learning Library (launch today)
- TSG Reading (strategy guides)
- TSG Mapping (strategy guides)
- Project Good Play
Share and engage with above (prof dev, case studies, and working w/amterials above)
- Negotiation (entering into different spaces w/different norms)
- appropriation (remix)
- play (experiment to problem solve)
- collective intelligence
NML community: http://projectnml.ning.com/
I’m trying to live blog Connect@NMC: Michael Wesch and Digital Ethnography. I’m coming in late but ETA: here’s the discussion template (http://ksudigg.wetpaint.com/page/NMC+Discussion). He’s talking about the exploration phase of the course and the infrastructure on NetVibes (http://www.netvibes.com/wesch#Digital_Ethnography) using Diigo, ZohoCreator and other tools. They did initial exploration on topic (anonymity), had to find 5 articles and summarize, input them into Zoho Cretaor (a student pulled a JSON feed to collate them and tag cloud); everyone had to read all 94 summaries for class. They had to do trailers and then put all trailers into one master Anonymity project trailer on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DKmNvSEJSNI). This helped them decide what aspects they wanted to focus on for their research projects Read more Live blog of Connect@NMC: Michael Wesch and Digital Ethnography
Inflected Form(s): amazon ranked
1. To censor and exclude on the basis of adult content in literature (except for Playboy, Penthouse, dogfighting and graphic novels depicting incest orgies).
2. To make changes based on inconsistent applications of standards, logic and common sense.
Etymology: from 12 April 2009 removal of sales rank figures from books on Amazon.com containing sexual, erotic, romantic, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered or queer content, rendering them impossible to find through basic search functions at the top of Amazon.com’s website. Titles stripped of their sales rankings include “Bastard Out of Carolina,” “Lady Chatterly’s Lover,” prominent romance novels, GLBTQ fiction novels, YA books, and narratives about gay people.
Example of usage: “I tried to do a report on Lady Chatterly’s Lover for English Lit, but my teacher amazon ranked me and I got an F on grounds that it was obscene.”
Alternate usage: “My girlfriend wanted to preserve her virginity, and I was happy to respect that, then she amazon ranked and decided anal sex was okay.”
Multimedia Use in Academy panel with Jeff Ubois from intelligent TV, Dru Zuretti from CCC, Gary Handman from UC-Berkeley media center and Judith Thomas from UVA media center (missed this last presenter because I had an appointment)
Context: changing landscape (13 hrs of video uploaded to YouTube daily?). They did Intelligent TV/CCC 2008 survey and faculty and staff interviews
- Faculty & staff had hard time using video but want to use it more
- Ad hoc use; restricted to their disciplines
- Siloed approach
- Want tie in to analog material
- Small project use; easy reference service; collaboration & production tools
- Faculty problems: can’t find media; students want more than they have; copyright issues (faculty not thinking about it & have differing interpretation of fair use); format problems
- Video as scholarly discipline: suspect as is Wikipedia (but TV news valuable, not used and cited)
- Boundary between commercial video and OER (look at textbook market, similar); niche for places like Alexander St Press
- Future of rights clearance (something like Google Books settlement)
- Tension between academic responsibilities and legal obligations (can’t teach dance w/o being a pirate)