Millenials and education

August 16, 2009

Well… for some of us, the traditional education system didn’t work so well… regardless of our generation, especially those of us who are visual + creative learners. I am so thankful I was pulled into at least a few nontraditional classes…
Better than standard lecture all of the time, for sure.

Love Michael Wesch’s videos…

Free program certificate — Teaching and Learning in MultiUser Virtual Enviroments

October 22, 2008

The European funded MUVEnation project has just launched ‘Teaching and learning with MUVEs’. This is a one year postgraduate programme, delivered online, for future and in-service teachers who want to use innovative methods and tools to address learners motivation and participation issues in compulsory education. What impact can 3D virtual worlds, such as Second Life, really have on our learning and teaching settings?

The course is free, but there are only 80 places. Participants will receive a formal letter or certificate of completion from their assigned institution For a full overview of the programme description and objectives please visit. We have four levels of participation – from the full course to those who are more experienced and would like simply to observe and participate in discussions

The programme will be taking place in Italy, United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Belgium and France. If you are interested in participating then please see the registration details here on the site, the closing days for applications is the last week in October.
We look forward to hearing from you,
The MUVEnation team

about libraries and using images of patrons

September 18, 2008

Interesting and well thought response to Carson’s Laws for using photos you take at your library (Information Today, Sept/October 08), focusing on libraries using flickr to archive images, especially those of patrons. I’m not sure that I agree with the argument for not using consent forms, but overall, a thought provoking piece.

I think the goals of extending the library and promoting the community trumps that one, but I am not an attorney, nor do I play one TV. I think the context goes way beyond what is immediate “news” to the library and to its community – public, academic, etc. Henry Jenkins notes we are all now creators and participants in media, not just passive viewers/readers. How does the publicity law apply to this permutation?

A vision of students today

September 17, 2008

I love mike wesch’s videos.

Learn a new language with Babbel (not babelfish)

July 17, 2008

I think this sounds like a really interesting way to learn a language — social networking & multimedia style! Mashable has a good overview & review here:

Babbel is the latest site to teach new languages through a social Web-based immersion program, where the majority of the content is packaged into lessons created by Babbel. So far, languages such as Spanish, French, Italian, English, and German are supported. Each lesson package contains material pertaining to a different theme, such as travel or business, so you can learn a series of words and phrases within context.

Although I do like that the information is presented in multiple ways as it SHOUlD create a richer learning environment appealing to a variety of learning styles, I didn’t find a lot in the way supporting documentation, research, etc. on the site. It seems to be all about language and play… but hey if it works (but how will they know?)

I also wonder if they will expand to other languages — seems like kind of a short list, hmm?

Educational uses for social networking sites

July 6, 2008

First-of-Its-Kind Study at the University of Minnesota Uncovers the Educational Benefits of Social Networking Sites
University of Minnesota News (06/19/08) Badaracco, Luisa

University of Minnesota researchers have determined the educational benefits of social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook and also found that low-income students are in many ways just as technologically proficient as their more advantaged counterparts. The researchers found that 94 percent of students in the study used the Internet, 82 percent used the Internet at home, and 77 percent have a profile on a social networking site. Students said social networking sites taught them technology skills, creativity, being open to new or diverse views, and communication skills. Data was collected over six months from students in 13 urban high schools in the Midwest. In addition to the initial surveyed students, a follow-up, randomly selected subset were asked questions on their Internet activity while they used MySpace. University of Minnesota learning technologies researcher Christine Greenhow says students that use social networking sites learn and practice the kinds of 21st century skills that educators say are needed to be successful. “Students are developing a positive attitude towards using technology systems, editing and customizing content, and thinking about online design and layout,” Greenhow says. The results show that social networking sites provide more than just social fulfillment or professional networking and have implications for educators, who have an opportunity to support what students are learning on the Web, Greenhow says. The study contradicts a 2005 study from Pew that suggests a digital divide is forming in which low-income students are technologically impoverished.

More at Univ. Minnesota News