Wednesday, December 17, 2014

News Round-Up: December 17

Warning: This is OLD NEWS since my schedule is still out of whack from being out of town (and offline!) all last week; the news items below are from before I went out of town. But even old news can be good news, so here it is: better late than never! Click here for more news round-ups and there are some quotes and graphics round-ups too. :-)

For those of you who are curious, I do use the magic of Inoreader to manage this whole process. Here's how: Archiving the Ephemeral.

And now, the (not so new) news...

Top Ed-Tech Trends of 2014. Audrey's always-fabulous year-end blog posts are now appearing; so much goodness — The Indie Web, Data and Privacy, CCSS, Competencies and Certificates, MOOCs (of course), School and Skills, The Business of Ed-Tech, Buzzwords...and more to come! And don't forget THE BOOK: The Monsters of Education Technology... and you can see Audrey plus Kin Lane and Martha Burtis here in a video from D'Arcy Norman: The Business and Politics of EdTech.

The Battle for Open: How openness won and why it doesn't feel like victory by Martin Weller. Another book I really want to read... free download: thank you, Martin Weller!

Reclaim Innovation. This brilliant piece by Jim Groom and Brian Lamb is making the rounds again; you may have seen it at Educause back in the spring. READ IT AGAIN.

Notes on the University as Anxiety Machine. And if you're wondering why innovation is so slow to come to higher education, Richard Hall's notes here about the university "anxiety machine" are very much worth reading.

Us ‘n Machines. And here are some powerful thoughts here from Alan Levine on technology tools and the complexity of our online spaces and relationships.

Connected Learning Principles. Connected Courses has turned out to be a hugely important part of my fall semester, and this piece on "Connected Learning Principles" is a great summing up: interest-powered, peer-supported, academically-oriented, productive-centered, openly networked, with a shared purpose!

Learning that Connects. For more on those principles, this is a great piece by Mimi Ito on connected learning which develops those principles in compelling detail.

... And here is my favorite video of the Connected Courses series: so much good stuff here! Connecting to the IndieWeb Movement:

IndieWeb Advocates Launch Known. This GigaOm article about Known makes a good follow-up to the video!

Rhizomatic Learning – A Big Forking Course. After my great experience with Connected Courses this fall, I am hoping to join in on rhizo15... whatever shape that takes. Dave says the discussions will begin in February/March, and there's a mailing list here you can sign up for. I signed up!

How (Not) to Design a MOOC: Course Design Scenarios From Four xMOOCs. Great thoughts here from Debbie Morrison. Much of it boils down to this: courses worked when "the learner was a viewed as a contributor, not a recipient."

POTCert Week 13: Personal Learning Networks. And for a great take on course design, I really enjoyed following Maha Abdelmoneim's blog for the POTCert event this semester!

Dip Your Toes into the Shallow End of the Pool. Here's a great New Year challenge from Mark Barnes, making just ONE small change in your classes to see what happens. I especially like this one: Throw out traditional grades for one assignment.

Reflecting on Reflection: A Habit of Mind. Very nice piece by Terry Heick. I would guess that we can never create too many opportunities for reflecting on our work as teachers, students, learners, makers, etc.

Community-Building Cheat Sheet. And from reflecting to connecting: lots of good ideas here for classes-as-communities.

6 Rules to Break for Better, Deeper Learning Outcomes. The emphasis here is very much on independent learning, e.g. "Don't quietly wait to be told what to do."

Veronica Valenzuela: Experimenting With Code to Open Up Learning Pathways. And here's a learner story compiled by Howard Rheingold about how Veronica Valenzuela is indeed breaking all the rules to achieve some in-depth learning!

Specifications Grading. Robert Talbert is retooling his classes with specifications grading, so I've linked here to his G+ stream where he is sharing lots of information about the process! See also his resource wiki for flipped classrooms here: InvertedClassroom.

Common Core Testing Ignores Common Core. I'm almost as exhausted by CCSS as I am by MOOCs, but this is a rousing article about the absurdity of CCSS from "Curmudgucation" ("A grumpy old teacher trying to keep up the good classroom fight in the new age of reformy stuff").

Meaning and Standardized Writing. Another great piece from Curmudgucation: "One of the most unsuccessful initiatives of the Great Education Makeover is the attempt to reduce writing to a skill set that can be assessed by a standardized test."

Make Some Noise: Voicing Our Written Words. Great thoughts from Chris Friend here on writing and audio.

Uniform Behavior. And on standardization, here's a post from Steve Wheeler with a fantastic video: Deindividuation and Conformity in the Classroom.

A scaffolded approach to PERSONALised student PPDP. Very nifty item here from Sue Beckingham about reflective blogs, professional portfolios, etc.

Blogging for Learning: Mulling it Over. And a wonderful post from Silvia Tolisano about blogging for documenting, reflecting, sharing, and connecting!

Why Digital Assessment Will Kill the Percentage Grade. I wish I could share Joseph Gliddon's optimism here. Sadly, it's all grades grades grades at my school... even when there are so many great alternatives, as this post documents!

Experiences in Self-Determined Learning: Moving from Education 1.0 Through Education 2.0 Towards Education 3.0. And here is a great series of reflections by Jackie Gerstein about self-determined learning!

How to Use Google tools in Project-Based Learning. And as infographics go, this is a pretty good one!


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Kevin! Using Twitter more (thanks to #ccourses) has been a big boost for me that way. People share so much good stuff at Twitter! I still prefer G+ for conversations, but in terms of finding out about things, Twitter is so useful! :-)


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