Saturday, December 3, 2011

It has been a month since I last wrote anything here. I have become a bit dispirited as I try to figure out the next stage in my life. This morning I came across a tweet from @cpohanka alerting me to an educamp-in-va taking place in Fredricksburg VA and so I went to the Wiki for the event. The best part about the event is that is seemed like an un-conference and it was free. My Edupunk juices started to flow and I decided to post something on the event wiki. It all stemmed for a Will Richardson list that follows. Here is what I wrote.

Will’s World/

  • Create your own education.
  • Find problems and solve them.
  • Be unique.
  • Make beautiful, useful stuff.
  • Build a network of really smart people who you will never meet.
  • Be indispensable.
  • Do real work that changes the world.
  • Have a brand.
  • Share widely and safely.
  • Collaborate.
  • Add value.
  • Be a voracious learner.
  • Tread softly but boldly.
  • Edit the world.

You should learn about what you want to learn about, or need to learn about. I believe that means that you should create your own learning or education. Now how do we help students to do that in school. It really is not that hard conceptually, it is just hard work. It is a teachers responsibility to find out what their students are interested in before they even begin to develop objectives for what a course it about. A great teacher discovers what their students are interested in and somehow connects those interests to the subject. Making the connection is what teaching is. It is helping the fish to understand the water. You should never teach Algebra I or American History for instance the same way. Everything should be different every year because THE STUDENTS are different every year. Experience is a collection of learning and dealing with a changing environment. As to the how to fly a plane example, imagine if the student doesn’t want to be there, has no interest in flying planes, and is forced to be then until he/she is 16? -Norman Constantine

The only thing we really need to do in “schools” is teaching human beings to understand the code of communication and that the alphabet or or movie making or whatever. Teach children to read and discover what they want to know about, then turn them loose and be there to pick them up when they fall. READ READ READ. A human being connected to the Internet can discover the sum total of what human beings know and remember. They do not need “school”, they only need the ability to “break the code”.Norman Constantine

Please comment on these ideas. I am going to try and expand on them in future blog posts next week. Help me out.