WHAT I JUST LEARNED:
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Where I am Delivering this Presentation
It is a pleasure to be here and part of this annual virtual conference. The term virtual has some interesting meaning today, but could I am not virtually beaming through the Education Service Center Region XI site. I am actually sitting here, in a comfortable conference room deep within the inner heart of the center.
Over the past several months, I have been keeping track of the bandwidth that is available at most hotels, what they call “High Speed” Internet. One hotel, I believe in Canada, delivered 5 Mbs, and all the rest have been a fraction of one megabits per second — not nearly the bandwidth to deliver a virtual conference presentation. So since I was on my way back to Raleigh from Las Vegas (for work), I stopped off at DFW airport and took the TRE rail over to the service center this morning. (more than you wanted to read here)
I am delivering two presentations as part of the “Resistance if Futile” VC. The first, a regular keynote of mine, is called “Cracking the ‘Native’ Information Experience.” It is based on my on-going position that technology, in all of its manifestations, is only tools, and we do not learn from tools. We learn from experiences. So I ask the question, “What are the qualities of our students outside-the-classroom information experiences (video games, social networking, hyperconnectedness) that make is so compelling, and might we leverage some of these qualities in our more formal learning experiences to affect better and more relevant learning?
I identify four qualities of that experience in the presentation. But there are actually a number of others embedded in the four. The complete list (as it stands) is:
- Provokes conversation
- Fueled by questions
- Build on & through identity
- Rewarded with currency
- Demands personal investment
- Guided by safely made mistakes
You can click on the document to the right to read a more detailed examination of each of these qualities of the ‘Native’ information experience.
I am also delivering another presentation, one that I have never performed before. I have written about the subject of textbooks — fairly extensively. But I have never layed down my ideas in a sequenced way for speaking and listening. So who knows how it’s going to end out.
First of all, it is important to say that I am suggesting some possible directions that textbooks (or whatever we end out calling them) along a continuum, but I am making now promises nor predictions. There are simply too many factors that influence where we go, not the least of which is the habit we have of inventing something totally brand new and completely out of left field.
Regardless of where things go, it will not happen in a vacuum. Education and how we do it will evolve within the context of purpose — “What is the purpose of school?” In one of the slides I suggest that the purpose of school is to…
Prepare our children for their future by facilitating learning experiences that employ learner-relevant pedagogies, harness the qualities of a new information environment, and instill in all children a learning lifestyle.