Friday, April 13, 2012

Worth Reading...

Sharing materials I came across this week.  Feel free to comment on any of the links provided below.

1. The Creativity Crisis (Bronson and Merryman)- discusses the current creativity crisis in America

With intelligence, there is a phenomenon called the Flynn effect—each generation, scores go up about 10 points. Enriched environments are making kids smarter. With creativity, a reverse trend has just been identified and is being reported for the first time here: American creativity scores are falling.

2.  Leveraging Learning by Organizing Technology Use: A Modest Framework (Reilly)- structuring curriculum to privilege connections, critical consumptions and creativity.  Brings up crucial points to consider and in particular, the importance of creating an environment where students are building a network or participating in a learning community.

Facilitating learners' cross-cultural collaboration is an important aspect of our work as teachers.  Finding and framing questions, solving problems, creating works, and sharing resources, insights, ideas, and dreams represent important 'content'. Technologies allow for this to happen in unprecedented ways.  What we make of this is of course in our hands and our students.

3. The Next Book Must Be... (Warlick)- attempts to bring clarity and a sense of direction to the future of textbooks and digital resources

Be Provocative (fueled by questions) – The textbook should tactically and strategically leave things out.  It provokes questions, the answers of which provide mortar for the personal and participatory construction and reconstruction of the book.  It is always broken and always fixable, and the rules belong to the reader.

4.  The Transformative School (Lehman)- striving for more than being a "good" school

But there's another level that schools can achieve. Schools can transform. They can eclipse content and skills and become about something more. They can be about realizing the best versions of ourselves. 

5. What Tech Wants: A People Agenda (Hardy)- thoughts about how we should look at technology and what tech allows us to accomplish.  If you are not familiar with Monika Hardy please check out Lab Connections and the concept of "Detox" to better understand the changing conversation.

Tech wants us to change the conversation. It wants to free us up for more pausing, and listening, and breathing. In a sense, tech is giving us an incredible mic and mirror, to talk to ourselves about whether what we are doing matters. It’s giving us an incredible kitchen table, (AI-infused conversation so we can hear each others’ hearts) to talk to others about whether or not our gatherings in a space or room, matter.

6. Deb Roy: birth of a word- (Link found in What Tech Wants) MIT researcher Deb Roy wanted to understand how his infant son learned language -- so he wired up his house with videocameras to catch every moment (with exceptions) of his son's life, then parsed 90,000 hours of home video to watch "gaaaa" slowly turn into "water." Astonishing, data-rich research with deep implications for how we learn.