Posts Tagged “mwesch”

There has been a lot of conversation over the Vision of Students video by Mike Wesch. Scott McLeod referred us to the “dust up” and Gary Stager and Wesch are having a good talk write about it. I see Stager’s point that the blogsosphere can “inflate” the worth of a piece of work, but I still think that the resulting conversation is powerful.

And not possible without blogs and RSS and our edublogosphere.

Whether the video portrays university education’s flaws or whether it gives us a picture of students’ reality or even if it just shows us that students are “whiners”, what has resulted from the video is a conversation that is awesome.

Students in the classroom are talking to teachers about their lives outside of the classroom.

Teachers are talking to their students about relevancy.

Educators are talking to other educators about how to engage students more.

Parents are wondering what their child is getting for 20,000 dollars a year.

And ultimately, people who believe in and love education are talking about rigor and scholarship and lesson design and LEARNING.

And that ain’t bad.

But in the end, what I wanted to share in this post was a quote from Wesch’s response to Stager and other’s criticism. This is why students (digital native or captive or whatever) still need teachers.

The great myth is that these “digital natives” know more about this new information environment than we do. But here’s the reality: they may be experts in entertaining themselves online, but they know almost nothing about educating themselves online.

What a fabulous quote. That whole paragraph is great. Check it out.

Here’s the video if you haven’t seen it yet.

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If you haven’t seen Mike Wesch’s video on the information r/evolution, you really need to. It’s a terrific look at how tags are reshaping the way information is organized (or not organized, for that matter). I have written a detailed post on it on my Talking Tech blog which tries to demystify web 2.0 tools for teachers.

So I won’t write that post again here.

But this video really captures how the back end hierarchy of categorizing information is no longer happening or necessary. Tags and search capability have created a way for information to be available in lots of ways – so different than the old model of the book being in only one place on a shelf.

Check out the video:

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(originally posted on harterlearning on Feb 12, 2007)

Scott McLeod over at Dangerously I rrelevant brought attention to this April 2006 guest posting by Mike Wesch (who just made the incredible Web 2.0 you tube video…see earlier post in this blog). In his guest post on Savage Minds, Mike describes his World Simulation activity. He calls this activity an example of anti-teaching.

“Teaching,” he says, “is about providing good information. Anti-teaching is about inspiring good questions.”

Reading on in this post, it sounds like a terrific example of students learning and understanding cultures and how they differ and how they thrive (or not) in a globalized world. The activity in fact, seems like a great one and comments by actual students seem to confirm this.

I am struck, however, by his use of terms. Purposely, he refers to this successful activity as an example of anti-teaching. He continues to say that he finds himself anti-teaching more and more in his efforts to have students really learn. Has our opinion of teaching truly come to this? Have we lost all faith in the idea that teachers actually do teach for understanding and that the very questioning that Mike values is in fact the very same questioning that many teachers value? And they call that teaching.

Now I recognize that perhaps it is Mike’s intent to inspire us (like Apple) to Think Differently. His very use of this technology may anger some or at least make teachers defensive. But then, reading the comments, I found no such anger. No such indignation. No one saying, “Wait a minute, I do that stuff all the time and I’m a teacher.” Perhaps it’s Mike’s disclaimer that appeases people by saying classrooms need to have both teaching and anti-teaching. Or perhaps the World Simulation was just such a good activity that teachers were able to look past any slights and recognize a chance at a good lesson plan when they saw one.

Or maybe I am just too sensitive.

Recently there have been discussions in other blogs about teacher movies and whether they inspire people to become teachers, or paint the picture of teaching to be too intense and too life changing to be done by any mere mortal, I guess I am sensitive to how we as educators refer to ourselves and our colleagues. Maybe we don’t all do it perfectly or even well. But when we do, shouldn’t we be calling that “teaching”. Doesn’t it hurt our own cause to refer to best cases of students truly understanding as the exact opposite of teaching?

I love education. And I really love to see understanding happen around me. If, through something a teacher did/planned/encouraged, students start asking deep questions and demonstrate understanding, then I say we call that TEACHING. Because that’s why I think a lot of us got into this gig in the first place.

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(originally posted on harterlearning on Feb 4, 2007)

Web 2.0…The Machine is Us/ing Us at The Thinking Stick

Over at Thinking Stick, Jeff posted the great video by mwesch in the above post. It also allowed me to work out how to add YouTube to my own blog, which was an added bonus. I’ve added it above. It is a response to Jeff’s own YouTube video explaining Web 2.0. Thanks to Jeff for finding this one and of course, thanks to mwesch for making it and sharing it with us all.

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