I don’t know what to call this

TL;DR

Greetings good people.

We, some HCPS ITRTs and hopefully some other people, are participating in a MOOC-ish type of thing guided semi-synchronous online learning experience and we’d like you to play along if you’re interested and excited. The experience slanted towards people who care about the spaces where technology, culture and learning become blurry. Sign up over here and the first “assignment” is here.

Masochist Version

Massive Online Open Courses are currently being heralded as the future of education and there are lots of them out there.  It is fairly typical edtech hyperbole to hail the newest thing as the solution to all of our educational ills but there is a lot of value in having educational experiences with mixed enrollment that live in the open web and take advantage of that ecosystem of learning and communication.  That value is particularly evident for people who are focused on exploring and shaping how technology impacts learning.  If you aren’t personally leveraging technology to reach new understandings, to see things in new ways, to make connections, to energize yourself, to build communities, to educate yourself- it’s going to be impossible to speak with authenticity, nuance and authority on the subject to teachers and students.

So in order to put my time and energy where my mouth is, I’m going to work with interested parties here in HCPS to facilitate a Communal Open Educational Opportunity (COO?). To help frame it, I’ll break it down against the current MOOC model.

MASSIVE vs Communal

It won’t be massive but this will be open to anyone who wants to play along. The goal is for it to be big enough. It will be focused on building connections between participants and making connections to other communities. Massive tends to result in choices made to address scale. I hope this is less hot dog factory and more artisanal sausage making.

OPEN/ONLINE

It is online and in the open. I hope to see external participants and I believe the content produced will be useful to others. It will attempt to take advantage of the way information works online in addition to

COURSE vs Experience

I don’t know if this a course in the way it’s typically defined. My goal is to make it more of a guided experience through a series of broadly defined categories with lots of opportunity for engineered serendipity, flexibility, community guidance/participation in how things are shaped etc. Essentially, enough top down guidance to provide some shared experiences to build on but with the explicit, expressed and deliberately engineered freedom to encourage participants to build off core elements in ways that matter to them. I want this to be an opportunity to practice what we preach and to enjoy the process.

Caveats

Come and play if you want to. It will be messy and it will be done in a way that amuses me. Don’t participate out of any sense of obligation.

Participate in all, some or none without resorted self-recrimination. Apologies for complete/incomplete work are not needed. This is a guilt-free process.

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