Quote: “By participating in the making of meaning, we also learn how to judge and evaluate it, giving special sensitivity to the ways information can be shaped, positively as well as negatively.” (pg. 96)
Explanation: I connected with this quote because students learn by doing. From a math perspective, I am happy to see the change in education from what the teacher is doing to what the student is doing. If students can be apart of the making of the meaning, i.e. exploring mathematical concepts instead of being given a process, that is when deeper understanding takes place.
Question: Students participating in activities that require them to explore and be involved in making meaning can take them a wide range of the time depending on the student. How do we accommodate a whole class and the various times it takes them to reach a learning goal? How do we urge students to persevere when they get stuck?
Connection: I think of the quote as students being inventors. If someone invents a gadget and sells it across the world and then someone else buys that gadget and has a problem with it. Who are they going to ask to help them solve the problem? The inventor of the gadget because they have the biggest breadth of knowledge about the gadget. Give students the opportunity to make meaning and they will be the best evaluators of that knowledge.
Aha: We should just teach math through physics labs. Then students will be discovering mathematics all day… but it may not be that easy.
Chapter 8 - Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out
Quote: “...Ito and her team constructed a typology of practices to describe the way young people participate with the new media: hanging out, messing around, and geeking out...we can being to see not only how each level of participation produces a richer sense of learning but also how the affordances of digital media environments come into play in the construction of various learning communities.” (pg. 100)
Explanation: This quote sums up the chapter about the different levels of participation kids have in the new media. The chapter explains what each level looks like and the benefits of learning at each level.
Question: Should we require that all of our students reach the “geeking out” typology of practice?
Connection: Of course, this chapter directly relates to our technology class this spring. The 52 or so students coming into the course were a variety of ages and were at a variety of levels of technological prowess and residency. In order to learn the most from the class, should it be a requirement that every student is “geeking out” in online chats, blogs, curating sites, social media, etc? Is this a requirement of every educator going into the next generation of teachers? It may be. If we are to teach our students to be active participants of the global community and responsible residents online, then we must ourselves.
Aha: I am a lifelong technology learner!
Chapter 9 - The New Culture of Learning for a World of Constant Change
Quote: “As we watch the world move to a state of near-constant change and flux, we believe that connecting play and imagination may be the single most important step in unleashing the new culture of learning.” (pg. 117-118).
Explanation: This quote, again, reiterates how important play, imagination, and passion is at unleashing real learning and engagement.
Question: There are a lot of educational software out there, but will they ever be as popular as WOW?
Connection: The connection to World of Warcraft was very interesting in this chapter. I felt the whole book was leading up to the point when they revealed that World of Warcraft was the perfect learning environment. I agree that online games like WOW encourage collaboration, passion and support different skill sets, but how can we justify playing WOW in class? Or, when are they going to roll out a whole curriculum based on the gaming world? Will we reach non-gamers?
Aha: A high percentage of my current students, and colleagues, are gamers!