$5.00 of Effort

$5.00 of Effort

“Why are you willing to pay $5.00 for a low quality 30-second clip of music but you aren’t willing to pay 99 cents for a good quality complete recording of the same song on iTunes?”

“Honestly… because my friends will hear it.”  – Sam Altman

I’m pretty sure that this can become an analogy for why creating blogging and collaborative writing communities are so much more engaging than writing in a journal, writing an essay for a teacher, or taking notes in class that are only for a test. Students aren’t willing to put forth the equivalent of 99 cents of effort if only they (or only their teacher) is going to see it. However, if their content will be seen by many other students, they will put forth $5.00 worth of effort.

I want my kids to always put forth $5.00 worth of effort. I want them to continue to come back and purchase more and more content from the ideas that my classes provide. Are there any other ideas other than giving students the ability to broadcast/syndicate their content that will make sure that we receive that level of engagement and effort? What is the specific value of expression that engages students? How can we capitalize on it in our classrooms?


  1. Jane Delmage

    Hi there, I am a 3rd year education student who is currently taking an Educational Computers class. I was reading your blog and posted a blog entry of my own in response to your blog.
    I do realize that you were looking for ideas on how to keep things engaging for the students, but I couldn’t help thinking that sometimes the enagagement needs to come from within the learner.
    What are your thoughts?

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