Monday, January 28, 2008

Web 2.Ideology

In my Web 2.0 Learning Community meeting this morning, I mentioned some of the driving ideas behind those web 2.0 apps we're finding so useful in our classes that are actually changing the way we teach and learn. I believe they are important elements in the foundation of a polychronic classroom and any assignment or project that uses this technology.
  1. Creation
  2. Collaboration
  3. Community (Space/ Time)
  4. Interaction (Fun)
Create your own textbook. Invent new ways of working - online or off, from home, the road, the office. Build a virtual classroom or better yet: a virtual campus. Draw your own illustrations, make your own models, or have your students do it.... all of it! We are users but we are also creators. Some of us write code that allows others to create pictures or stories. Learning happens when we make use of information. The cycle of - here's the info, write it down, now repeat it back - is over! Make the student find the info, document it publicly, and then actually put the info to use.

Collaborate with students. Share experiences. Contribute to the collective conscience - share your knowledge. Add value, add purpose, add something! We are at a key point in history where every individual has the ability to contribute to a larger goal. Ideas, knowledge, and opinions are being shared without a price. Add a letter, a word, or a page... We're building - and your students should be too. My students should be working together to give me PowerPoints, not the other way around.

Web 2.0 is about Community. About connections, about Space: Virtual space, private space, myspace, your tube. Mine, yours, ours. We learn what we know from WHO we know. Time online, in RL, on the road, on the phone, the polychronic! Responsible users are questioning the spaces we exist in, the space we release our information into - Is it private? Who can see it? We set permissions based on community relationships and establish relationships based on our level of interactivity. We move very fast on some things and extremely slow on others. Some of my students could probably move through one semester's worth of content in one month. Others may need a few extra months. We must reevaluate our semester/quarter system and install something more individual - more Multichronic! We must not confine ourselves to learning in one place. Connect the dots between spaces by blurring those boundaries.

Interaction is Fun. The value of our time on earth is measured by our pleasure, pride, accomplishments... satisfaction. These things drive our games. We play to have fun, to be pleased. To win, to brag, to be better, to win again. To be satisfied with and share our research, productivity, outcomes, goals, and levels. We block our most miserable experiences out and cherish those that we enjoyed. Your students will do the same. Challenge them.

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