I’ve been thinking more about how I learn. Or more to the point, how I learn differently now.
Wasn’t it simple then? Read a book, take some notes, write a paper.
Books such as A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink, or Made to Stick by Chip Heath and Dan Heath, have energized me. Convergence Culture by Henry Jenkins and Wikinomics by an old reading friend Don Tapscott have challenged my thinking.
My learning community includes my RSS feeds, Twitter, and several ning networks, including one I just created for Virginia independent school teachers.
What a wealth of information. What opportunities. In the past couple of months, I’ve participated in a live streamed discussion of the future of schools, watched students from SLA talk about how they learn, connected with a teacher from Bangkok, and clicked on more links than I can keep track of to help me focus my efforts on how we learn and teach. One night I couldn’t sleep, and the next thing I knew, I was online, participating in a conversation with teachers in Australia!
Sometimes this information overload seems, well, overwhelming.
The term "community of learners" can be a buzzword or can be the central focus of what we do, what we encourage our students to learn to do. The onus is on us to ensure this happens effectively and efficiently for all us.
I am spending the next few weeks thinking through the next step so I don’t feel like I am flailing my arms, running around in circles.
[image: Creative Commons Wacky Waving Inflatable Arm Flailing Tube Man!RWhitsell]
Susan, I know that feeling of flailing! I appreciate your thoughtful approach and will stay tuned for your conclusions! Unfortunately there are so many “networks” to be a part of that it is easy to get overwhelmed. What I am concerned about is the commercialization of our input; of course, that is what fuels the slew of “free” web 2.0 services, but I wonder if serious work can ever be done when the group controlling the site is essentially doing it to gain economic impact.