Challenging question…

Challenging question…

Earlier today I was talking with a colleague that I highly respect who was challenging the premise of my blog post from yesterday.
She was saying that if I truly wanted to recast education as a new character that I would need to define what it is that I can do with connected learning and technology that I can’t do otherwise.
This particular teacher (and tech integration specialist) has a wonderful way of pushing me to think about whether something like google docs is really any better than butcher paper and different colored markers. Whenever she asks questions like this, I really do take pause. So I put it to you. What is it that we can do now that isn’t just the logical extension of what has come before? What collaborative exercise is not just a gallery walk in disguise? (I have my ideas, but I would like to see if anyone wants to take the same bait that I was given.)
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  1. Teachers and students can ask the thought leader in their field/topic of interest directly. Or if not ask then at least gift that person the student’s opinion/contribution. This in itself is remarkable and so the capacity to engage meaningful questions to stir interest from a thought leader’s camp is an intrinsic self motivating skill.

    Students can produce a prototype and have it made as a one off without the costs/obstructions in former industry practices. Then students can market the product directly at low cost to a global market. Students can work directly on real world design problems in groups or individually alongside international designers/scientists/students.

  2. Of course it is an extension of what has come before… isn’t that, after all, evolution. Gallery walks are a wonderful method of sharing information, learning from others, etc – valuable indeed.

    What has changed I believe is that learners can collaborate from any where, any time. Butcher paper models require that learners are face to face. Furthermore, the number of actual participates can feasibly be much larger and far-reaching with a google collaboration.

    Furthermore, individuals decide when they want to participate thereby having their entire focus on the task at hand.

    Just a few thoughts… for now.

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