Monday, August 31, 2009

The first week of class

The first two classes were a lot of fun, at least for me. I've been able to watch what happens when 31 really bright students explore the content, the technology, the classroom, and their team. Structuring the assignments and then getting out of the way seems to be working, just as Marc Prensky describes it:

"One reason that the pedagogy of students teaching themselves never caught on as the mainstream approach – although it has been advocated by many, certainly since Dewey and probably since Socrates – is that the available tools for learners to use just were not good enough....Today’s technology offers students all kinds of new, highly effective tools they can use to learn on their own – from the Internet with almost all the information, to search and research tools to sort out what is true and relevant, to analysis tools to help make sense of it, to creation tools to present one’s findings in a variety of media, to social tools to network and collaborate with people around the world. And while the teacher can and should be a guide, most of these tools are best used by students, not teachers."

We're contributing as we are able, from the instructor's experience (sprinkled with curiosity) to the students' enthusiasm and willingness to explore. What an adventure...and there's an entire semester to go.

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