Friday, February 24, 2006

The New Literacies: Essential or Enrichment?

David Jakes asks and answers the question about a range of Web 2.0 tools, the level of awareness of such tools and their use in today's classrooms. His post , The New Literacies: Essential or Enrichment? is on the Techlearning blog and I've added it to my boolkmarks to share with others.

IWeb 2.0 tools provide real opportunities. Is there a place for tools such as blogs, wikis,, RSS feeds, podcasting and Flickr in our classrooms? David argues that it's not about the tools per se but "their capacity to be used to create learning environments that are dynamic, student-centered, and information-rich. It's about creating classrooms where students can learn the skills that will make them effective life-long learners in the context of today’s world."

Educators need to be savvy about the tools that their learners are using and provide some guidance in internet safety eg participating in online communities. The MySpace example is provided here and other examples can be found on the web.

A stimulating read!

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Mashups - fad or future?

Interested in exploring the world of mashups?
Dion Hinchliffe provides Some predictions for the coming 'mashosphere' and asks the question, "Where do you think it's going? Are mashups a fad or the future?"

He predicts that "RSS (will) become the mashup protocol par excellence".
On IP, he comments on the sacred "Right To Remix" and the role of the Creative Commons license in the world of mashups.

e-Portfolios buzz in the UK

Josie Fraser provides some quick links in a round up of latest happenings in the world of e-Portfolios in the UK on her EdTechUK blog.

ELGG and Moodle integration holds great promise and provides a dimension beyond a narrow definition held by some institutions.
I'm a fan of ELGG and Moodle and will be watching this David Tosh project with interest.

South Oz (Leafy Sea Dragon)

South Oz is diverting from e-Learning temporarily to highlight a unique South Oz treasure in this photo of a Leafy Sea Dragon, South Australia’s stunning state marine emblem.

It was photographed (Feb 2006) under the Rapid Bay Jetty on Fleurieu Peninsula, south of the capital city (Adelaide).

The jetty, originally built to service the nearby limestone & dolomite mine, has fallen into disrepair since the mine was closed.

The jetty is popular with locals, tourists, anglers and divers and is rated as one of the best dive sites in Australia. The jetty was closed to the public for safety reasons (Christmas, 2004) and has continued to deteriorate as this photo of some of the pylons shows.

The marine ecosystem is now under threat as the jetty provides shelter for a unique marine environment, including the Leafy Sea Dragon .
Community groups are trying to muster support to save the Rapid Bay Jetty and environs before it's too late.
Friends of the Rapid Bay Jetty
website has more information.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Web 2.0 on Southozzie

Just posted some additional references to Web 2.0 on SouthOzzie and updated my Superglu site and my social bookmarks (most recent of which are embedded in this blog).
Lots of buzz around Web 2.0.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

PLEs - personalised learning environments

James Farmer provides a highly visual posting on Incorporated Subversion on the "The inevitable personal learning environment" incorporating insights from a range of passionate folk including Stephen Downes.
Blogs and aggregation are at the heart of the personalised learning environment. ELGG shows some of what is possible in this space providing tools which empower the learner.
But "... major institutions aren’t going to start switching their LMSs to our PLEs any time soon."
James makes a compelling case, based on WPMU, for a possible solution. Likely or not?

Interested in research reports on personalised learning environments?
Check the NESTA Future Lab reports "Personalisation and Digital Technologies."
"The logic of education systems should be reversed so that the system conforms to the learner, rather than the learner to the system. "

Monday, February 06, 2006

Digital Communities and the Power of Trust

Robin Good highlighted this powerful article by Alan Moore in his recent MasterNewMedia news. "Digital Communities and the Power of Trust: A look at the Future"
Although the focus is on business and marketing in the 21st century of digitally connected communities, it provides salient information for educators.
"The internet ... is not so much a technology as social phenomenon."

The increasing penetration of the internet, higher bandwidth and the increasing convergence with mobile technologies provide opportunities for consumers (educators and learners) to engage in highly personalised (learning)
experiences and Web 2.0 tools are providing alternatives to push technologies as consumers seek personalisation and "trust-based strategies ... essential in a time of information empowerment."

Blogs, wikis, RSS, aggregation, folksonomy, to name just a few, point to a significant change in the way we use the web (or the Read Write Web) and connect with trusted others (FOAF).
This article has numerous embedded links and a range of examples to explore (including the London Bombings and Creative Archive Project) for anyone seeking to find out more about this 'new paradigm.'

Jeff Jarvis' comment on Buzzmachine, "Give us control and we will use it. Don't and you will lose us," provides a powerful message.