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Teaching as a Conversation

I wasn’t originally going to post this, but after reading Rita’s blog entry about her experience in our student-led conversations tonight I had to chime in. Rita commented:

“I truly feel that I interact with my classmates and instructors more often and on a more complex level than I ever have in a face to face environment. I think that our conversations are more carefully planned and thought provoking than face to face conversations. Take a moment to think about all of the times that you have left a conversation and thought “oh I should have said this” or “I wish I would have worded this more clearly, I should have said…”. In an online environment, you have time to construct those complex thoughts and you can always, easily, go back and review the conversations and revisit the conversation, and add to it.”

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Teacher’s Survival Guide to Ed-Tech Conferences

YouTube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvORKwmk9Xo
TeacherTube link: http://tinyurl.com/66o9hv
PDF transcript
Quicktime download (57.7 MB)

Following my previously posted rant about content, I spent the evenings at my journey to Educause 2008 working on another content project for school: an instructional video. Since I didn’t have much to work with and I didn’t have my own machine…only iMovie and Jing, though TechSmith offered to help and tried to sell me a copy of Camtasia Studio on the Educause expo floor. But I got away with a free Camtasia manual for the team at work: SCHWAG! So, I decided to make a video geared toward teachers and the first time ed-tech conference goer.

I have been to many conferences in my career, and I wish someone told me these things a while ago. Educause is especially big, busy, and intimidating the frist time around; but careful prep, comfy shoes, extra business cards, and a willingness to meet people go a long way to making the conference experience a good one.

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Educause 2008

Wow what a week! First of all, I came face to face with my own digital mortality when the logic board on my trusty year-old MacBook Pro decided to have a campfire. So it’s out for a week, thank goodness for the extended AppleCare! I am using the loaned Mac from work at the Educause 2008 conference this week.

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The Legend of the Menehune

Here is my first digital story, at least the first one created outside the confines of my current employ ;). Enjoy… This is dedicated to my Mom who always teased me about the Menehune. Downloadable version in Quicktime format available here or link to it on TeacherTube.

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IDR: Instructional Design Rut, it can happen to you…

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/trojanllama/21355437/

This has been an enlightening past couple of weeks. First, creating the WebQuest and now I am working on a digital story. Digital stories are essentially that: stories created digitally using all sorts of tools. I happen to be using iMovie which is still fairly new to me. The best part of this assignment is that it can be about anything. I happen to be on vacation this week in Kaua’i, so I am doing some investigative reporting into the story of the Menehune.

I am having a lot of fun with this. Somewhere along the line, I forgot about the actual content of what goes into online education, or education in general even. I think what I am grappling with is that I have spent so much time on managing the "container" that we put content into, that I forgot about the content itself. I think I have been in an instructional design rut.
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It’s all about content…

outsourcingI posted my most recent project, a WebQuest, at http://www.withaq.net/e-portfolio/webquest/index.html. It is entitled "Sending Work Overseas: The Outsourcing Debate in Apparel Manufacturing." Yeah pretty heady I know. I love working as instructional designer primarily because I get to learn about so many things just by exposure. Working at FIDM, I have been exposed to an industry that I would not have previously ever encountered. I decided to tackle a topic that is very close to the heart of the fashion industry: outsourcing.

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Disruptive Teaching and Learning

stop, or don't!

I am usually not one to ruminate on and on about information I get at work. Many schools are run like a business, and being on the IT side of things, you get exposed to a lot of the business-y cross-talk and things that don’t necessarily relate to the world of education on the surface. In higher-ed, the two worlds are closer together as we need to prepare our students for the business world and to compete in an economy that ain’t what it used to be. But when you look at K-12, the dissociation between the business world and the world of schools seems much further apart. Or is this changing?

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Cool iWeb themes

Hi everyone…this is for the course’s iWeb fans. Apple has released new iWeb themes for it’s popular blogging, web-site building, kitchen sink 2.0 tool. Read more at TUAW.

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Awesomest Wiki-book ever: a “how to 2.0”

Just a quickie post to rebroadcast a link floating around recently: Web 2.0 and Emerging Learning Technologies from Curtis Bonk, one of the lead collaborators along with many students around the world.  (Really, who authors anything in a vacuum anymore?)  Anyway, I saw him speak at Educause a few years back and he was great.

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Updates and stuff

babybirds_lil.jpgSo I recently finished up my most recent course “Issues & Developments in Educational Psychology: Learning and Classroom Management” and it kicked my ass. I was sort of waiting for this opportunity though as I had originally intended on going to get an M.Ed. in order to get more into the “educational” aspect of my career in eLearning. Previous courses had focused on introductions to using technology in curriculum, this was my first real immersion in theories of learning above what I had casually read in the past. My final project was a wiki page on the University of Illinois’ web space: WikEd. More specifically it is a shortish theoretical analysis of the ed-psych and practical impacts of social networking technologies on teaching and learning. It is here if you are interested. Much props to George Seimens, Stephen Downes, and many other resources who had thoughtfully shared their thoughts and theories online for all of us newbies from which to remix and develop our own learning connections. These helped shape my thoughts on it…comments and criticisms welcome.

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