You are currently browsing the monthly archive for December 2005.

I’ve been keeping a special eye out for anything New Zealand since receiving a letter confirming a job interview in Dunedin later in January. My trusty news reader came to the party this morning with a post by Alan pointing to Auckland based Artichoke.

Once I’d fallen into step with Art’s off beat writing style (I can see why Alan picked it up), I began to get quite enthusiastic. The sharper edge of Art’s statements nearly made me choke on the BBQ pork take away I was hurriedly eating while reading.

In particular I’m happy to find Art’ is another voice not afraid to ask confronting questions about those sharable learning objects etc. However, that strange silence for any responses still prevails – seems to be the preferred strategy of present day leadership the world over.

Art’, since you asked, (I dunno? did you ask?) let me point out some of the things I’ve had to say about learning objects, learning management systems and digital rights management etc in the past:

  1. LMS Comic
  2. More against the LMS
  3. EdNA Groups or the Open Network
  4. Digital Network Literacy
  5. Networked Learning
  6. The Post LMS Age
  7. Everything you need to teach and learn online
  8. Lawsuit forces Web 2 learning strategies
  9. ePortfolios – I don’t get it?
  10. Die LMS die!

Well! If that doesn’t get me on your “Edu Blogs that challenge” list Art’, I dunno what will.


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A great article from a small school in the USA using Free and Open Source Software.

Total Open Source Savings for Setup – $92,675.20
Ten Year Savings – $338,667.00

The reality of these figures for Noxon Schools is that if we had Microsoft products only we would not have185 computers we would have 50 because that is all we could sustain. That is the big difference for us.

Thanks Rob for the point.

Imagine a teacher as a DJ, keeping a class kicking like a dance floor – alive and inspired. David did, and what a fantastic idea! Of course, we’d have to wait for those long sox with shorts type teachers to go away for a while, but imagine it! With a plethora of media sourced from OurMedia, our teacher/s mix tunes, speaches, video and photos in an audio visual rave party in the classroom! Why the hell not? Some of the students give it a belt too… I’d like to take up the challenge. The next presentation I’m asked to give, will be with the lights down, smoke, strobe, tunes and VJs, and even a mirror ball! Great idea Dave! I’m inspired.

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a. Types of Knowledge
b. Interpretation
c. Emergence
d. Physicality
e. Salience and Inference
f. Associationism
g. Distribution
h. Meaning
i. Shared Meaning
j. Organization
k. Social Knowledge
l. Power Laws and Inequalities
m. Knowledge
n. Public Knowledge
o. Knowing
p. Structure and Process
q. Reliable Networks
r. Network Structure
s. Truth
t. Knowing Networks
u. Remnants

What an article, all 21 of them! Downes does it again. I thought he was gunna run out of alphabetical markers for the sections in this post. An Introduction to Connective Knowledge has to be the most satisfactory explanation of the concept of connectivism I have come across yet. Have to agree with George, that Stephen’s posting time has perhaps caused it to slip under the radar a bit, but it will surely pop up in 2006. Its a long read, and I really hope Stephen puts out an audio version for remixing some day. I find myself devoting less and less time to large reads, preferring comics and audio if possible.

I’ve been meaning to draw up this comic idea about higher education and a learning management system (LMS) for a while now, but you know how some things go, they just sit in the to-do pile for too long.

Well, this new Flickr craze I’m having motivated me to finish the strip and load it up. Here it is.

I’d never noticed before, but was pretty disappointed to find that free Flickr accounts only allow 3 sets to be made! So I added this latest comic to the OpenCourseware set.

update: James bought me a pro flickr account for the year! What a legend. Now I can create as many sets as I like 🙂

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Sean FitzGerald recently posted to the TALO eGroup an announcement from the Australian Flexible Learning Framework that hints at the direction for funding projects in 2006.

I responded with my ideas for projects in 2006 and asked for assistance in getting those ideas to meet the directions of both the AFLF and a training organisation here in Australia who will support applications like these. I haven’t asked the Institute I work with yet, was going to stew on these ideas for a while:

  1. Toolboxes meet web 2.0 – creative commons, wikibook, feedbooks as Toolboxes.
  2. Networked Learning – a model for New Practices
  3. Pay it Forward Learning – a model for New Practices
  4. Open Courseware – a model New Pratices
  5. Digital network literacy – improving skills in networked teaching and learning, Learnscope

Was thinking that given Learnscope funding never seems to go very far, might be better to apply separately for separate literacies – one for using wikis, another for using RSS, and another for using tags…

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Going back over this blog’s entries throughout 2005 has been a really valuable exercise. Not only am I going to be pubishing a book by the end of it, but I have dug out long forgotten ideas and revamped them a bit. Take the pay it forward course model idea for example. Its now in a Flickr slide show, updated and looking nice, and possibly reaching a wider audience as a result. I hope to find an opportunity to apply for funding and try out this model in 2006.

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Someone in my news reader made notice to Lulu, a place where you can upload a book, ready for binding and sending on a per order basis, sending you 80% of the takings and keeping 20% for their service! They have an option of size, hard cover or paper back, DVDs and CDs and a pretty easy to use interface.

obviously this is great for so many things… text book publishing, pop and that life story he made a few years ago, mum and her photo albums, me and my various teach and learn online productions…

Hey! what a great idea! I could go through my year old blog and pick out the good bits, including screencasts (I knew that PDF approach would pay off), comic strips and pdfs, photos, and compile them into the 2005 edition of Teach and Learn Online fit for the coffee table, staff room sitting area, old school boss’ desk… I can’t imagine how all this work will look in a bound and designed book! Different to the screen I’m certain.

So I’m hard at work compiling such a distro, ready for (hard or paper back? – why not both!) and for you, my faithful, supportive readers to order a copy and keep me fed for 2006! Start saving those pennies, I hope to have it up and ready for the new year.


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A year ago I created this comic strip, depicting a model for networked learning and open courses. Originally I had the comic in a PDF for a 15 minute presentation (can you believe that!) at a conference in Sydney.

I just found the images again and have loaded them to flickr as the OpenCourseWare set.

I still like them now as much as then 🙂 I’ll have some audio to go with it soon.

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A while ago, people in the TALO eGroup were discussing how moblogging seems to carry little evidence to being a powerful teaching and learning tool, simply because at the moment it is mostly being used as a social tool…

It just occurred to me, while I was trying out moblogging to Flickr that perhaps proponents of the ‘moblogging doesn’t have much to offer in education’ thinking are mistaken when trying to find examples of ‘moblogs for specific educational contexts and outcomes’. If only because it is a clear example of trying to make the new paradigm fit the old…

You know all those ideas of life long learning, learning in life, life is learning, holistic learning and otherwise age old fights to get education to recognise that learning happens everywhere – well moblogging is part of that everywhere. So if you truly can’t see the educational contexts and outcomes in moblogging, then you’re understanding of and educational context is too narrow and old school.

Even if all a student uses moblogging for is little more than documenting social aspects of their lives, such as a photo of self sitting in class, photo of friends at the canteen, photo of teacher picking nose, then they are all examples of that person building an identity and personal affiliation around their learning context. If a teacher can inspire moblogging’s use in assignment work and research – then great!

But sticking with the personal social use for a moment, if educational organisations, individuals, teachers aren’t willing to accept the whole student (and their everyday moblogging) into their teaching contexts, then they are restricting how much ‘real life’ a student can bring into the classroom, therefore taking away motivation, relevance, and the importance of social settings in the school, not to mention opportunities to understand more about the people they spend so much time with.

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