Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Second Day of the Online Connectivism Conference

On the second day of the Online Connectivism Conference, Will Richardson has given a talk on Connective Teaching: How the read/Write Web Challenges Traditional Practice. Here is The abstract of his talk:
"In the traditional information delivery model of instruction, teachers were seen primarily as content experts who were charged with making sure their students "learned" a certain set of knowledge. This model was built inherently on the idea that knowledge and information were scarce and that if students weren't exposed to it in school they would be unlikely to learn it elsewhere. Today, however, knowledge and information are abundant and fast changing. In this environment, the emphasis of our teaching must shift away from content to instead focus on helping students build their own networks of trusted sources through which they can find and evaluate relevant content on their own. But what does this shift mean for our own personal and professional practice? Can we guide our students to be independent, lifelong, connected learners without first building our own communities and trusted networks for learning? And how can we best model for our students the effective and ethical use of a connected world in our own lives? This presentation examines some of the ways in which expectations for professional practice are changing to reflect this new learning environment and looks at the challenges to implementing those changes".

On his Connectivism blog, George Siemens has provided a link to the talk audio. He also has pointed to discussion around Will's talk. Below are some quotes as given by George:

What is a connected education?: "...when everything knowable can be known, then what it means to be educated ought to be up for grabs."

The Gift of Connection
: "Teachers, during the most stressful period of teaching probably in the history of mankind, we have been given a gift -- a gift of connections with one another."

Tony Forster: "Networking creates the opportunity to meet people of common interests. The edublogging community is great for teachers, but have students benefited?"

Passion-Based Learning
: "Since we have rejected traditional classrooms where students are treated as empty vessels and embraced learning that is learner-centred, passion needs to acquire an important status in education...s an educator, I need to step outside my “comfort zone of content” by sharing my own self: things that I myself am passionate about. I need to stop peddling content and show that I am a learner too."

Graham Wegner: "I do wonder how connectivism can work for the pre-adolescent years of schooling and how technology dependent that form of learning is. I really like a lot of questions Bill raises on his wiki in regards to whether we need to declare allegiance to one theory or another."

Further discussion is available at the conference forum.

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