In this week’s materials, Michael Wesch talks about how new social media environments have amplified what he refers to as “the crisis of significance” in education; where in a world of “nearly infinite information” we should be teaching subjectivities, not subjects. Richard Miller challenges us to “push ideas into our culture”, by placing them out on the web, thereby “showing the world what the university is for and that’s for ideas that belong to no one.” Alex Reid expands on Miller’s talk and suggests what needs to happen for digital humanities to thrive. John Seely Brown and Richard P. Adler envision a new form of apprentice learning in which open, online social networks leverage the power of social learning for all participants. Finally, in his TED talk on the child-driven education, Sugata Mitra shares his initial research findings that seem to indicate that “education is a self-organizing system, where learning is an emergent phenomenon.”
What does it mean to educate in this way—for learners, for teachers, for communities? Who benefits within a paradigm in which collaborative, constructivist sense-making dominates? How does this measure against your own experiences, pedagogical philosophy and future?
When we meet on Friday, we’ll explore examples of student-collaborative and student-generated work. We’ll also finish editing our ‘about the bloggers’ section since next Thursday (September 30th) we will host a discussion in LearnCentral on online learning with our guest speaker, Nicole McClure. We can talk about the kinds of questions we’d like to ask her. We’ll also start brainstorming our classroom project ideas and familiarize ourselves with our wiki.