Scott Mcleod of the Dangerously Irrelevant blog has been responding to a challenge by Miguel Guhlin to find “new voices” and has been showcasing educator bloggers for the last week. I have been reading and growing my feed list with each addition. Tonight I read the blogs of Dave Sherman and Pete Reilly. Mr. Sherman talks about “developing self directed learners” and ties it together with the kind of “what if?” questions that kids ask.
Mr. Reilly challenges each of us with this premise:
What would happen to our schools and our world if every teacher, administrator, and staff member lived and acted from his purpose each day? A purpose rooted in the deepest parts of his mind, body, and soul.
He also spoke of his own learning experience as he reacted to a post of Mr. Guhlin’s and in another post he listed the items he would include in the technology plan if he were leading a district. He also has a wiki for technology planning.
There are so many voices to listen to, to reflect on, react to, and include in our “circle of wisdom” The amazing thing is how many of these voices resonate with the same truths. These bloggers are not necessarily on the “A” list of bloggers. We are all so busy and tend to read the blogs that are easy to find or are written by faces we recognize, who have presented to large groups of educators and maybe have published books but as I try to achieve some kind of balance with the amount of reading I do I will definitely be including some of these writers. They challenge me, humble me, and make me thankful for a technology that allows me to hear their thoughts and learn from them. Thanks to Scott Mcleod for sharing.
One way we can find these voices is through the use of wikis. David Warlick uses a wiki page to embed blog posts from people who attend his presentations. Using the read/write tools that are available we can model the collaboration skills we need to be teaching our students be collaborating in becoming life-long learners ourselves and discover the bloggers and educators in each individual’s way is trying to find the best ways to prepare their students for the future.
Another wiki I visited this week is The Thousand and One Flat World Tales project. The premise is that an alien race has come to earth and angry that they are not finding humans doing any of the things they expect they send a message over the internet for countries to send their best storytellers and they then hold them hostage on their ship while they tell their stories and if the aliens find them interesting they will not destroy the human race. Different grades and schools from anywhere can participate and build this wiki by adding the stories of their own cultures.
I also learned of a new online tool. It converts videos like the ones you find on YouTube to AVI, MOV, Mp4 and several other formats that you can then save to your computer. It can be found at Vixy.net – this will be a useful site!