As an introduction to this conversation, we offer these reflections posted by one of our listeners on her blog, "Short Quips: thinking in (hyper)text" (Check out here blog, to see this teacher's complete response, and view her About Me.):
Tonight I participated in my first live educational conference online through EdTechTalk. The conference is called “Teachers Teaching Teachers” and takes place every Wednesday night. I did not join the group via video, but rather just watched/listened to the other participants and participated through a live chat feature....
It took me a while to catch up to what was being discussed. Participants were throwing around the term “Youth Voices” and I thought at first that it was just a cool catch phrase for high school kids who were blogging. It wasn’t until i joined the live chat that I got a better idea of what Youth Voices is. Youth Voices, it turns out, is a huge site where the main purpose is to offer a space for youth to participate in discussion. It is a place where youth can post their thoughts and comment on other youth’s thoughts....
One of the discussions among the video participants revolved around how teachers should/are assessing their student’s contributions on Youth Voices. One educator shared how she is setting guidelines for how much/what her students need to contribute to Youth Voices within a specific time frame. For example, she will stipulate that her students need to write one post and make one comment within a week, and if they do both they get the marks for it. This particular educator works at a school in the Bronx and has found that participating in Youth Voices has empowered her students to have their voices heard. She noted how much time and effort can be put into a short comment, because the students are very aware of their online presence and ensuring they present themselves appropriately.
... It was an interesting experience to view it. I think the biggest thing I got out of the experience was that I was also able to network with educators from far and wide- always a positive when you are working on developing your professional learning network.
... I would love to come back to join in a conversation in the future, especially if I am looking for information specifically related to the topic being discussed. I am curious to know whether there are any live educator chats/conferences specifically for Early Childhood Educators. If you know of one, pass it on!
Click Read more to see a copy of the chat that was happening during the webcast.
Dave, Jen, & Jeff catch up on the last two months since ETW209, reveal the uninsurable risks of webcasting, discuss the state of the Rhizomesphere and embracing
the messy magic, and share a mini-linkdump.
Recently, when I (Paul Allison) walked into my teachers room, it took about 4 seconds of talking about what my students were doing for three African-American colleagues to talk in wide-ranging ways about violence and protecting children and dress and racism, and more. I just listened as carefully as I could, trying to learn what their questions were.
This is the first of three shows (#292 April 11, #294 April 25, #295 May 2) in which we are talking about Howard Rheingold's new book, Net Smart, How to Thrive Online. Howard joins us on Wednesday, May 2.
Joining Paul Allison, Monika Hardy, and Chris Sloan on this episode of Teachers Teaching Teachers are Alice Barr, Nancy Sharoff, Vinnie Vrotny, Valerie Burton, Sarah Rolle, Scott Lockman, and Andrea Zellner.
On this episode we mainly talk about the introduction to Howard's book and a syllabus for a social media literacies course on the high school level that he has compiled from his college-level syllabus.
Syllabus: Social Media Literacies, High School Level, Seed Version Compiled By Howard Rheingold
This syllabus is based on my 2012 book, Net Smart: How to Thrive Online, as a textbook. I set out to write the book as an educational instrument. As I explain in the introductory chapter, (which is downloadable free of charge), I have concluded, after thirty years as an online participant, observer, and teacher, that social media literacies are a critical uncertainty in the issue of whether digital media improve or erode human individual capacities and collective culture. Just as in the eras following the invention of the alphabet and printing press, literate populations become the driving force that shape new media. What we know now matters in shaping the ways people will use and misuse social media for decades to come.
The 21st century depends on a critical mass of people who understand basic scientific literacy, media literacy, information literacy, in addition to the literacies I cover in my book and in this syllabus. I use “literacy” in the sense of a skill that includes not only the individual ability to decode and encode in a medium, but also the social ability to use the medium effectively in concert with others. I didn’t write the book as a syllabus, but as a logical ordering of the five social media literacies of attention, crap detection, participation, collaboration, and network awareness: attention is the starting place for all media use; crap detection is necessary for effective participation; knowledge of individual participation is by its nature enmeshed with collaborative communications that take place through networked publics. When composing the syllabus, I duplicated much of this progression, but chose texts that can offer analytic tools, explanatory frameworks, and competing perspectives -- the basic building blocks for teachers to use. For high school communities, “Critical consumption online” or “critical consumption of social media” could substitute for “crap detection” as a label. The methods are identical, although many resources most appropriate for high school students must exist to replace texts in the original, college-level version.
Here are a couple of moments from Teachers Teaching Teachers #294
where we think about Crap Detection in light of KONY 2012. The entire show is there as well.
This was lots of fun and the perspectives shared by these Minecraft teachers about their students' lives in the game both profound in themselves, and easy to transfer to any classroom or learning situation.
To get the full effect, take a moment to find some string before you listen to this episode of TTT. How much? Fred says, "About two meters or a little over 6 feet is usually a good length. Hold the string between your two hands stretched out as wide as they go, then add about 6 inches."
Fred explains that he was "inspired by the session we had with teachers using Minecraft, where we explored an online game world via another virtual world, http://edtechtalk.com/node/5102 and I was intrigued by whether it would be feasible to explore a meatspace game in our virtual Teachers Teaching Teachers forum." He sees "string games as a gateway to keyboarding and creativity or finger calisthenics, and computer keyboarding: media magic for tradigital storytelling."
Playing games with string is a human cultural universal. This ancient art form is surprisingly helpful in developing both the manual dexterity and strength needed for computer keyboarding. The approach I use for teaching string games to groups also provides a helpful practice ground for some of life's essential skills: creativity, resilience, cooperation, and storytelling.
And that's not all. Here's an excerpt and a couple of photos from a post that Diana wrote shortly after this episode of TTT:
There were some great quotes that Chad, a fellow participant, shared via Twitter. (I can't recall them all - they were things like "it's important to model failure" and "string games are 'digital' fun".) What I realized was how potent teaching string games would be to analyze your own teaching practice. Listening to Fred teach the group how to make a 3-pronged spear made me hyper-aware of how important detailed, clear instructions are, and the different learning styles at play. The first time I tried it, I failed. The second time, when Fred re-explained and added a few "notice this part here" tips, I did it! I cheered pretty loudly when I succeeded. My webcam wasn't working on Google +, so I convinced my daughter to take a photo of my accomplishment.
I made a 3-pronged spear! Here's proof!
A less complimentary shot of me, with my string jedi master Fred on-screen
Fred mentioned that there are several books and YouTube videos that explain, step by step, how to make different shapes. I think I need a person near me to give feedback (though the string collapsing in unrecognizable shapes is pretty immediate feedback too). I gave myself a goal - to teach the kids in my SK and Grade 7 classes how to make the 3-pronged spear and do it to music at a June assembly. I'm repeating it here so it'll be my contract to myself to try it out and report what results.
Do you have your EdTechTalk stuff yet? Did you know there are T-shirts, hats, coffee mugs, buttons, magnets, and tote bags available? They're all based on Wordle interpretations of the EdTechTalk Delicious tags.
What are you waiting for? These are limited edition items. Shop now and avoid the rush!