Most of the people reading this realize this is a blog written primarily for the class "Creating a Digital Classroom". I have grown to enjoy this blog, so don't fall under the impression that this is just a blog full of different assignments. However, I feel I do need to mention some of the assignments I have been doing for the class, that way my "Professors" know that I am doing the required work.
One of my assignments was watch some of the NECC 2008 presentations. I went to NECC this year and it was very informational. However, watching some of the presentations I missed has sparked a desire to continue on this tireless crusade to change education to fit the needs of the 21st century. Here are two prenentations I observed and caused me to think differently about things..
Taking it Global: http://www.takingitglobal.org/home.html
I am not going to give you anything you can't read for yourself on the web page. I just joined and am anxious to see what evloves out of my membership. I am cautioning myself though. Taking it Global seems big and at times overwhelming. I want to get to that stage, but I thought I could get my students talking across my own district, county, and state; then eventually grow to bigger projects such as Taking it Global. Another barrier is the age of my students. Although fourth graders are becoming more independent, they are not completley there yet and need a lot of help and guidence when participating in large projects presented on this site. Check it out, I am going to. Maybe we can do a project together.
David Warlick: http://davidwarlick.com/wordpress/?page_id=2
David Warlick is one of the greats, but his message is similar to others: Preparing students for a future in the 21st century means changing the way we do things in education. Warlick specializes in literacy in the 21st century (blogging is his specialty) and has a lot of links to brain research (one of my favorite topics). He's got a good site and is worth checking out.
Alan November: http://www.novemberlearning.com/
I saw Alan November in person during NECC. He is well worth the hour of sitting. A couple cool things I learned from him. (1) www.kiva.com - This is a site where people invest thier money into a thrid world country buisness, and the investors/ givers actually get paid back with a small amount of interest. How cool is it when we give to ones less fortunate and they can give back. (2) This fun little tidbit: When you google the word "november", Alan hopes to be in the top 10 hits. Today he was fourth. He said he will always be below Wikipedia, but that is just because of Google and Wikipedia's buisness partnership. Go ahead try it. See where he is on the day you google him.
Okay, nothing earthshattering or life changing I know, but definitely thought provoking. Below is the site to the NECC podcasts which has links to the three confrences I watched. Oh, and by the way, when you are watching the podcasts, try to get someone to watch with you. That way you can chat as you watch (makes it more enjoyable and more 21st centuryish).