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on September 28, 2010 at 7:50:03 am


Week 4: September 27 – October 3, 2010

Theme: Many stories: A sociopolitical lens


The theme this week verges on disruptions to prescribed order when transformative technologies are brought to bear on traditional gatekeepers.  Mark Pegrum's chapter this week is on sociopolitical issues, and the readings concern the concept of "edupunk." 
We have in fact been viewing our topic through a sociopolitical lens all along, in Keen's suggestion for example that the "cult of the amateur" was creating a new elite that would rise to power by virtue of putting aside those who could not navigate the new folksonomies and identify with social networks; whereas Weinberger rejoiced in owners of content no longer owning the organization of that content. 
To view such disruptions through a more pedagogical focus, take the ePorfolios that we hope participants here will create and/or develop as a record of their brief journey through this session.  How would ePorfolios work as an assessment system where you teach, as opposed to the standardized testing and other exam-based criteria that might be driving your curriculum now?  If you feel that ePortfolios are valid assessment tools and you have your students create them, you might be at odds with an entrenched system. If you use them anyway (because you think they are the best tool for the job as you perceive it), you would be 'edupunk'. (For interesting insights, see Ambrose's presentation on Googlios, http://k12onlineconference.org/?p=478.
When we interviewed Mark Pegrum in January, 2010 (recording at http://tinyurl.com/100131pegrum; and also an interview he did with Gavin Dudeney in February http://tiny.cc/ZdIbV) he turned the tables and asked us this question: what key literacies should we be teaching students in a digital world? The recent K-12 Online Conference left a rich archive of video and podcast presentations, where many of the presenters addressed this very question thoroughly, in great detail and in many aspects, and with strikingly vivid illustrations.  Listening to these presentations you might think that edupunk had gone mainstream, that everyone is teaching digital skills and using web 2.0 tools with students these days, and you would be very fortunate to be working in a place where this was the case. From the K-12 Online presentations, it's clear that educators have identified a broad set of multiliteracy skills needed for knowledge work in the 21st century, and that their own creativity and that of their students has blossomed as a result of ubiquitous access to tools leveraging these skills (see Valdez, http://k12onlineconference.org/?p=443). . 
I have listened to a number of these presentations and identified several that I think strikingly address some aspect of Mark's question, and I've put them in an annotated list in a blog post here: (http://ning.it/ctMFsN; and the annotated list can also be found at http://tinyurl.com/supernova2006).  Also I've tagged my findings in Delicious so if I discover more presentations they will aggregate around this URL: http://delicious.com/vancestevens/k12online09+evomlit
And in September 2010 we are using the tag: http://www.delicious.com/tag/evomlit10 and http://spezify.com/#/evomlit10 
More Updates for Sept 2010 - Presentations!
Jennifer Verschoor mentioned my list of 21st century competencies for educators referred to above (http://ning.it/ctMFsN) in her talk on Sept 26, 2010, recorded here: http://connect.pi.ac.ae/p57572846/
You think that was awsome, wait till you hear from Carla Arena and the crowd at Casa Thomas Jefferson in Brasilia discuss their approach to materials development, of which this is one example: http://www.tesl-ej.org/wordpress/issues/volume14/ej54/ej54int/ - at 13:00 GMT Sunday Oct 3 in Elluminate, http://tinyurl.com/y3eh 
Meanwhile Mark Pegrum RETURNS with Gavin Dudeney to chat with us on Wed Sept 26, 2010, 08:00 GMT, also in Elluminate, http://tinyurl.com/y3eh . In preparation he's posted a remarkable wiki page at http://e-language.wikispaces.wikispaces.com/mr3 and I've transposed much of that to http://tinyurl.com/pegrum-dudeney, which I hope to annotate in order to prepare myself for the interview.
Task for Week 4
Scan the annotated list and identify the presentations you think most interesting and then view them and feed back to the list your reflections and answers to Mark's questions, not only
  • What key literacies should we be teaching students in a digital world?, but also

  • To what extent is it the responsibility of educators to teach/coach these literacies?

  • Are there any drawbacks or dangers in teaching/coaching these literacies?


In conveying answers to your questions, try to utilize the tools and project formats mentioned in those sections below.

Seen on Twitter: "Every great advance in natural knowledge has involved the absolute rejection of authority."

- Thomas Huxley http://www.famousquotesandauthors.com/authors/thomas_huxley_quotes.html


And now for something complEATly different.  The concept of edupunk suggests that there are issues regarding new technologies not being addressed by institutional learning, and it also suggests an 'in your face' approach to resolving some of these issues by stepping around the established authority and just doing it.  This week we'll consider what some of these ill-addressed issues are, and we'll ask: when is it justified to simply take off on one's own tangent on the assumption that this is best for one's students? What are the up- and downsides to such an approach?  In what way is this a multiliteracies issue?  Participants should enjoy addressing the question: Do you feel that you, or anyone for that matter, is, are, or should be an edupunk?




Theme: Many baas & ^^^^: An ecological lens


FINALLY, we put here issues that come up during the first 5 weeks and address them in the context of the five lenses from our course text by Mark Pegrum.  Of course, our participants might have other ideas.  In that case, we'll go with the flow.





We suggest the following for additional insights and information ...


What directions and tangents might multiliteracies and educational technology take in the coming years?


Let's start with the past.  Here Stephen Downes updates some predictions from ten years ago ...



Lidija Davis makes some Predictions Across the Web

Her last resource cited is the Future of the Internet III from the Pew Internet and American Life Project



Future of the Internet III - http://www.elon.edu/docs/e-web/predictions/2008_survey.pdf

How might the following impact education with respect to multiliteracies?

Technology stakeholders and critics were asked in an online survey to assess scenarios about the future social, political, and economic impact of the Internet and they said the following:

• The mobile device will be the primary connection tool to the Internet for most people in the

world in 2020.

• The transparency of people and organizations will increase, but that will not necessarily

yield more personal integrity. social tolerance, or forgiveness.

• Talk and touch user-interfaces with the Internet will be more prevalent and accepted by


• Those working to enforce intellectual property law and copyright protection will remain in

a continuing “arms race,” with the “crackers” who will find ways to copy and share content

without payment.

• The divisions between personal time and work time and between physical and virtual

reality will be further erased for everyone who’s connected, and the results will be mixed in terms

of social relations.

• “Next-generation” engineering of the network to improve the current Internet architecture is

more likely than an effort to rebuild the architecture from scratch.


The future of the Internet and HOW TO STOP IT

is a great open eBook by Jonathan Zittrain, which you can download free from http://futureoftheinternet.org/.

The book characterizes the wild west past of the Internet (free, open source, and generative, but plagued with concomitant problems from hackers, uneven quality control) vs the way it's trending now, toward locked down appliance apps where vendors control qualilty (that's good) but also what you can do with and add to the app (that's not so good).  The book's last chapter is about what we can do to reconcile these forces, before it's too late (gulp!).




Jennifer Verschoor found some resources on eportolios and posted them to our YahooGroup list


Here are two teacher ePortfolios:



Vance retweeted this, Sept 25, 2010


Buth tweeted back:



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