31. August 2008 · Comments Off on Can we keep leading lights burning strong? · Categories: My personal learning journey

I am privileged to associate with some amazing people.  These leading lights share their knowledge and expertise generously, stir others into action and are passionate about improving their pedagogy and that of others.

But what of their learning journey?
I’ve found that some of these leading lights face the “prophet in his hometown” syndrome.  While on the wider internet they are respected and admired, in their institutions they constantly have to do battle to prove themselves or their ideas are quashed or watered down or undervalued. So they can’t shine at full strength — or the people around them put sunglasses on.

Sure there are grants they could go for to run projects, but there often isn’t anyone to fill in for them in their day job.

Conferences and PD are often run BY them — not FOR them, so after a while their opportunities to replenish and grow are limited. Yet the best educators are often the most the passionate learners.

So there they are — ready to go further, but nowhere to go. It seems a waste of human capital – not to mention a lousy way to get a return on investment from both their efforts and the money spent to train them.  Your thoughts? Are there enough opportunities and support for educators who are leading the way? Or is it their duty to learn in their spare time and spend the rest helping others? Or is this a cheeky question to ask?

The theory of digital natives (those younger than 30 being perfectly at ease with and heavy users of technology) is busted as far as Howard Rheingold is concerned — and he’s doing something about it.

A social networking and online communications educator since the 1980s, Howard Rheingold found that when he suggested the use of blogs, wikis or other social media tools to his 21st century students, he got a lot of blank looks. And when he introduced students to these various tools – he was met with a chorus of groans over the number of different log ins and platforms as well as the awkwardness of trying to stitch these together.

He also wanted to provide a jumping off point for educators who want to go beyond the goal of just using tools — to get at the deeper literacies these technologies make possible.

His vision is now going to be a reality thanks to winning a MacArthur Foundation award — and he gives us a preview of that reality in his latest video AND the opportunity to join the community of practice once it’s been released.

A link for my mobile/RSS readers: http://vlog.rheingold.com/index.php/site/video/social-media-classroom-co-laboratory-screencast1/ or http://url.edna.edu.au/BtCM

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16. August 2008 · Comments Off on Why don’t I feel like bloggin? · Categories: Blogging, Second Life, Technologies, Web sites · Tags:

So many ideas for great blog posts – so little ambition. From a rant about the LOUD family living next door – to mulling over McD’s new virtual space for kids and the joys of Twittering — I just don’t feel like writing lately. Not sure why, but I’ve decied to try a video blog instead. Here’s a link to an MP4 file if you’re following via RSS: http://blip.tv/file/get/KerryJ-BlogPostLight244.mp4 If you’re here on my blog, here’s the embedded video:

Video thumbnail. Click to play

Freesouls is a photo commons project that involves photos of thought leaders and their thoughts on sharing and learning.

It is now a group on slideshow, inviting people to share what they think a freesoul is.

It was enough to inspire me to finally set up a slide show account and make a submission.

Here is mine:


View SlideShare presentation (tags: freesoul challenge meme risk)

If you haven’t seen it yet, the ExitReality plug-in for Internet Explorer aims to present the 2D web in 3D. It’s in Beta at the moment and I gave it a rough and ready test drive today.

While I don’t think it’s a virtual world replacement — I can’t help but be impressed that they’re out there swinging.

Link to video (Viddler web site): http://www.viddler.com/explore/KerryJ/videos/2/#

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