My Secret Shame (best of twitter 1-30-08)

Well not so secret anymore- here are some interesting quotes I pulled from Twitter* today. They are at a conference and may be quoting others so please excuse any misattributions.

Perhaps we should define digital fluency not in terms of *being* (what I am) but in terms of *doing* (what I can do, and habitually do).

Gardner Campbell

I liked it because it puts the onus on the individual to “do” what they need to do, not hide behind nonsense like “being” digital immigrants. Now, to what extent does what you “do” impact who you are? Are they the same? Does it matter?

On training vs. education: would you want your child to have sex education or sex training?

Kevin Creamer

That echoes my hatred for the word trainer at my old job and the idea of getting together to have “trainings” for teachers. I tended to start what I called conversations with “This is not a training. You are not seals . . . ”

Great line from Glenda Morgan: Jesuit approach to faculty development. We don’t want their projects; we want their souls!

Gardner Campbell

Exactly, but you can/should expect people to be careful with their souls and less careful with projects. Are projects the route to faculty souls? (Is the love of money the root of all evil? What are laws if they ain’t fair and equal?) I’m not sure, but I don’t think so. It might happen occasionally but I think it’ll fail the same way a lot of “help” fails. Sure, things are great when you’re around and doing stuff for me but when you’re gone nothing has changed.

It’s beyond the teach a man to fish metaphor. It’s like convincing a man he really ought to think more deeply about fishing and then we’ll talk about your fishing skills and what types of fish you might want to catch, then will work on those skills, do some fishing, evaluate what fish you caught vs what techniques you used and . . .

“We’re done?” the man asks hopefully. . . .

“Nope.” You reply “It’s cyclical. Why don’t we think about fishing again?”

Somehow I don’t think that’s quite as catchy but it’s closer to reality (probably even for fishing- which is neither simple nor constant).





*I’m not advocating for twitter, I’m still debating it. Today was certainly a good day. I don’t see much use for it in the K12 classroom, maybe college (not saying there isn’t any, just haven’t seen anything decent- prove me wrong). I do see how it can be useful for communities of people interested in the same things.

My wife loves it and uses it to stay in touch with friends all over the country. It has become an asynchronous ichat for people who don’t have time to call one another b/c of children, work, play, etc.

Comments on this post

  1. Jim said on January 30, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    Tom,

    I completely agree that the uses for Twitter in the classroom are as yet uncertain. Nonetheless, it is fun to “be there” and share with a group of people. My facile theory is that it would be an amazing way to create a community for entirely online courses, and could be an excellent mechanism for a hybrid class that what’s a very social portal -thinking along the links of the new wp.com Prologue theme.

    I think what Twitter does that other social networking apps like WP, Drupal, ETC. cannot was well put by D’Arcy Norman with his critique of the Prologue theme in a WP.com account:

    the real magic of twitter isn’t the ability to post – it’s the ability for each individual to define their own group, rather than forcing a set provided by the server…

    The ability to create almost instantaneous network is quite impressive here, and how that translates to a classroom effectively is still a huge question in my mind.

  2. Susan said on January 30, 2008 at 2:14 pm

    Tom, I echo your statements about today being a good day on Twitter. Gardner works at UMW, here in town, and I know him. He makes my day when he tweets from a conference. I have trouble keeping up with his thoughts, but they are all gems.

  3. Tom said on January 30, 2008 at 2:40 pm

    @Jim- I would like to see that. I wonder if we couldn’t teach either an edtech class for the school of continuing studies or something on digital literacy here. It’d be really interesting to try that out (and a number of other things)

    @Susan- we’re getting Jim Groom at UR from UMW (who happened to comment above you- Internet karma). I’m excited about that. We had Gardner at UR (before I got here). I am sorry to have missed him. I read his blog and have for a hwile. When I heard he’d be at UR I figured I’d try to drop by in a non-stalkerish way but could never figure one out.

    Lesson learned. Stalking is ok.

  4. Jim said on January 30, 2008 at 3:42 pm

    Tom,

    If they let us play with this stuff in the context of a class, it would be nothing short of awesome. I had the opportunity to teach here at UMW a few times, and it only made my experimentation with these technologies that much more rewarding and helpful to the community at large.

  5. Susan said on January 30, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    Hi Tom,
    Glad to have touched base here. We are trying to get Gardner to come speak to our faculty (he is checking dates now). We are a PK-12 independent school, and we have a 1:1 laptop program. I respect his ideas, love his podcasts, and know he would be inspirational. (He’s also one heck of a guitar player. His band played at my wedding reception last summer!)
    Susan

  6. terry said on February 3, 2008 at 9:25 pm

    Tom,
    I posted a short while back my own little diatribe on training vs. deep learning
    http://terrydolson.net/blog/2008/01/11/training-vs-deep-learning-for-faculty/
    I purposely posted it before ELI, knowing I would go to Gardner’s cirlce discussion on faculty development. But I haven’t gotten any bites. I am still trying to figure out ELI’s understanding of faculty development, but I will say that I was pleasantly surprised by the conference (in that respect). Really good ideas came out in several sessions, there were more sessions addressing it than last year, etc. But–lots of room for growth in this area.

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    […] Over the last few days Twitter has been ablaze with updates from this year’s Educause Learning Initiative conference. The flood of tweets certainly augmented my already considerable yearning to be there, and Tom Woodward of the Bionic Teaching blog does a nice job of distilling a few gems from his twitter stream in this post. […]

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