Chapter 7: KNOWING, MAKING, AND PLAYING
Quote: “The old culture of learning is no longer suited for a world of constant change (Brown, Thomas, P. 90).”
If something is not broken, then why fix it? However this is not the case today with education. It is broken and in need of fixing. I agree with this quote wholeheartedly. It is time to embrace a new era in education. Brown and Thompson offer great suggestions for the direction in which education should head.
Question: Why are some educators so resistant to change?
Connection: This chapter offers ideas for redesigning education. Our authors make a case that classrooms should incorporate what a student knows while pushing them to make and to play. This reminds me of a quote we saw several chapters back, “Give a man a fish feed him for a day, teach a man to fish feed him for life.” This can really only happen when students take ownership of their learning. This is done through experimentation and trial and error. Thus rather than teach students directly, we need to incorporate better learning environments and conditions for learning to manifest naturally. Our ED 530 class has been a wonderful example for how this can work. By pushing students to be part of a collective and community, they will “leap, experiment, fail, and continue to play with different outcomes” (Brown, Thomas, P. 98).”
Epiphany: “The three dimensions of learning-knowing, making, and playing-are already beginning to emerge within the fabric of the digital world itself (Brown, Thomas, P. 99).”
We must embrace these three dimensions of learning within the classroom. The way that students share and learn from one another outside of the classroom is truly amazing. Why not bring this into the classroom? Learning should be fun! By incorporating elements of play and experiment we can make learning fun. THis is the future of education.
Chapter 8: HANGING OUT, MESSING AROUND, AND GEEKING OUT
Quote: “Ito and her team constructed a typology of practices to describe the way young people participate with new media: hanging out, messing around, and geeking out. We believe that these three practices could frame a progression of learning that is endemic to digital networks (Brown, Thomas, P. 100).”
Well I never really knew why my ED 530 professor named our three badges in our class hanging out, messing around, and geeking out until now! I now realize that the course was very methodically planned out. When I entered the class I had never really delved into social media and many aspects of the class were new to me. I was developing my skills at a hanging out level which is where one learns to be. Now I am confident that I have mastered all levels and have a much deeper digital toolbox.
Question: Is it possible to ditch grades in the classroom and make things mastery based such as our ED 530 class?
Connection: Our ED 530 class this semester had three mastery badges: a hanging out badge, a messing around badge and a geeking out badge. I think this is a very progressive way for essentially grading students or maybe not grading students depending on how you look at it! There is an end goal in mind. It needs to be realized that not everyone is going to reach that at the same time which is ok. Yet the climate is conducive for everyone to reach the end goal together as their community and collective push and help each other. I have learned so much from our ED 530 community this semester. More than I would have learned simply from books or professors had we not had such a rich online community. THis is something I will definitely establish in my classes down the road.
Epiphany: It is all about getting our students to Geek Out! “Geeking out provides an experiential, embodied sense of learning within a rich social context of peer interaction, feedback, and knowledge construction enabled by a technological infrastructure that promotes intense, autonomous, interest driven learning (Brown, Thomas, P. 104).” We need to find ways of making our classes feel like they belong to the students. When this happens, learning occurs more naturally and organically. Pushing students to be a part of digital communities and collectives where they can explore their learning together with peer to peer collaboration is the future of learning and the way to get our students to buy into our classes and curriculum.
Chapter 9: THE NEW CULTURE OF LEARNING FOR A WORLD OF CONSTANT CHANGE
Quote: “Imagine an environment where learning happens on a continuous basis because the participants are internally motivated to find, share, and filter new information on a near-constant basis (Brown, Thomas, P. 107).”
This is exactly how I want my classes to operate. Who wouldn’t? I will do everything in my power to make sure my class and students have the necessary resources to be able to build a stronger learning community that is more conducive to organic learning.
Question: How can we make sure that our classrooms and our students have the necessary and most advanced resources to help build a stronger community while fostering organic learning?
Connection: Many students today belong to communities and collectives outside of the classroom such as those which pertain to video games. These students learn through peer to peer interaction and through tacit knowledge. The things they do and share in these communities is absolutely amazing. Why resist this type of learning and not make a it a part of the classroom. In our ED 530 class this semester, for the majority of the time, we were essentially playing to learn. At many times it did not feel like “learning”, but rather was fun. I hope to adopt this into my own classes.
Epiphany: Students can have their cake and eat it too. By this I mean class can be fun and learning does not always have to seem or feel like learning. I think once we realize this and are able to incorporate this type of learning into the classroom, we will finally be enjoying the fruits of a new educational era. One that celebrates organic learning
and one where students want and enjoy being a part of.