Saturday, September 29, 2012

Value-based vs. Pain-based

This combination of two different conversations with Audrey Watters, from last week and this week, is around the "pain test" often used to frame the potential for ed tech (and other) start-ups. I believe we got to a very significant set of conclusions, and this is why I so value our weekly podcast conversations. If you wanted to listen to one conversation we have had, I humbly suggest that this might be it--both for the progression of our thinking and for the ultimate conclusion.

Addressing "pain" as the primary consideration is for a business, intriguingly, exactly that--treating a symptom, which actually means focusing on an immediate and often surface-level problem in order to maximize revenue, rather than working to treat the causes of the pain or symptom. Not unlike the U.S. health care model, which is increasingly expensive and often doesn't actually improve underlying health, and where massive profits are made from treating symptoms, there can actually be a perverse incentive to not cure the illness (I don't want to take that too far--or maybe I do--but you might dwell on that thought with regard to education and learning).

Using the "pain test" to frame the value of educational start-ups leads to a particular set of potential outcomes and activities. It is important to remember that another legitimate, potentially more beneficial, framing would be looking for a "value proposition:" to define a set of services or products that have value and and are therefore worth purchasing. Not only does this represent most of the transactions in our lives, I believe, but it requires that the person or organization providing the value must demonstrate that value and not just play on our fears or emotions.

But in the scramble to win big in the ed tech bubble, that would require more depth of actual knowledge about teaching and learning, and would likely take too long. It's not a good "monetization" strategy. I appreciate the innovation that businesses (and especially Silicon Valley) can bring to bear when focused on a sector of our culture or economy, but we should be careful not to buy the snake oil hype--or a framing of the market that encourages the manufacturing of snake oil.

Direct link: http://audio.edtechlive.com/cr20/AudreyStevePainTest.mp3

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Thursday - Tom Vander Ark on Getting Smart

Join me today, Thursday, September 27th, for a one-hour live and interactive FutureofEducation.com interview with Tom Vander Ark on his book, Getting Smart: How Digital Learning is Changing the World. Tom is founder of GettingSmart.com, and also CEO of Open Education Solutions and a partner in Learn Capital, a venture capital firm investing in learning content, platforms, and services with the goal of transforming educational engagement, access, and effectiveness. Previously he served as President of the X PRIZE Foundation and was the Executive Director of Education for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation where he implemented $3.5 billion in scholarship and grant programs. Tom was the first business executive to serve as public school superintendent in Washington State. A prolific writer and speaker, Tom has published thousands of articles and blogs. In December 2006, Newsweek readers voted Tom the most influential baby boomer in education.

Date: Thursday, September 27th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-27.1459.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/tomvanderark.mp3.
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found HERE.

From GettingSmart.com: "In our digital age, students have dramatically new learning needs and must be prepared for the idea economy of the future. In Getting Smart, well-known global education expert Tom Vander Ark examines the facets of educational innovation in the United States and abroad. Vander Ark makes a convincing case for a blend of online and onsite learning, shares inspiring stories of schools and programs that effectively offer 'personal digital learning' opportunities, and discusses what we need to do to remake our schools into 'smart schools.'

  • "Examines the innovation-driven world, discusses how to combine online and onsite learning, and reviews 'smart tools' for learning
  • "Investigates the lives of learning professionals, outlines the new employment bargain, examines online universities and 'smart schools'
  • "Makes the case for smart capital, advocates for policies that create better learning, studies smart cultures"

Tonight - A True History of the MOOC

Join me today, Wednesday, September 26th, for a one-hour live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar on the "true history" of the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) with Dave Cormier, Alec Couros, Stephen Downes, Rita Kop, Inge de Waard, and Carol Yeager. While a wave of courses from prominent universities are now labeled as MOOCs, we'll drill down on the connectivist roots of the early MOOC offerings and discuss the importance of the differences between them and the current breed.

Date: Wednesday, September 26th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-26.0742.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/mooc.mp3.
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found HERE.

Dave Cormier is an educational activist, researcher, online community advocate and the Manager of Web Communications and Innovations at the University of Prince Edward Island. He has published on open education, Rhizomatic Learning, MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), Digital Identity, and practical classroom uses of virtual worlds.

His educational journey started in 1998 teaching little children to speak English. The pivotal moment of his career happened when he was teaching at Hannam University in South Korea in 2003 surrounded by the papers of 275 writing students and wondering if he had them all. That winter he started using discussion forums to bring all of his students together in a writing community (and to digitally keep track of their work) and he hasn’t looked back. He’s since helped organize online communities of teachers, spoken at events around the world and worked to understand how internet changes what it means to know. His educational exploration partners have included faculty and researchers from well-known universities, and lone teachers in small town classrooms. Some of them are even still talking to him.

Dave’s keynotes in the last couple of years have centred around how coming to know is a messy, imprecise process at once intensely individual and necessarily embedded in a community - Rhizomatic Learning. You can follow him on twitter at http://twitter.com/davecormier or follow his thoughts at http://davecormier.com

Dr. Alec Couros is a Professor of educational technology and media at the Faculty of Education, University of Regina. He has given hundreds of workshops and presentations, nationally and internationally, on topics such as openness in education, networked learning, social media in education, digital citizenship, and critical media literacy. His graduate and undergraduate courses help current and future educators understand how to use and take advantage of the educational potential offered by the tools of connectivity.

Stephen Downes works for the National Research Council of Canada where he has served as a Senior Researcher, based in Moncton, New Brunswick, since 2001. Affiliated with the Learning and Collaborative Technologies Group, Institute for Information Technology, Downes specializes in the fields of online learning, new media, pedagogy and philosophy.

Downes is perhaps best known for his daily nesletter, OLDaily, which is distributed by web, email and RSS to thousands of subscribers around the world. He has published numerous articles both online and in print, including The Future of Online Learning (1998), Learning Objects (2000), Resource Profiles (2003), and E-Learning 2.0 (2005). He is a popular speaker, appearing at hundreds of events around the world over the last fifteen years.

Prior to joining the NRC, Downes worked for the University of Alberta as an information architect, and prior to that, as a distance education and new media design specialist for Assiniboine Community College in Brandon, Manitoba. This followed a decade of teaching experience both in person and by distance with Athabasca University, the University of Alberta, and Grande Prairie regional college.

Rita Kop: I currently work as an Associate Dean of Education at Yorkville University. I am involved in the design, development and maintainance of online educational programs, and in teaching and research of the learning experiences. I am also currently carrying out research of open educational practices, such as Massive Open Online Courses and am involved in research in learning analytics. The research entails the use of qualitative measures and data mining. A virtual ethnography was one of the recent methods I used, and the data analyses involved qualitative data mining and social network analysis of large amounts of learner data and research in the ethics of using ‘Big Data’ in research.

Till August 2012 I worked as a researcher at the National Research council of Canada on their Personal Learning environment Project. I left Swansea University in the UK for three years to work on the research and development of these PLEs. In Swansea I was assistant professor in the Department of Adult Continuing Education. Apart from research and teaching my remit there was to widen access to Higher Education through 'reaching in' activities of working with University departments in developing progression routes for non-traditional students. Prior to this I managed a number of large Widening Access outreach projects in South West Wales and the Valleys. These projects were dynamic collaborations between the department and community partners in South West Wales and often involved the use of technology. I developed their MA in Lifelong Learning programme.

My career in education started as a teacher and head teacher of an infant school in Alphen aan den Rijn in the Netherlands. I am interested in lifelong learning from early years to old age and am a bit of a nomad; I enjoy travelling and learning about people and cultures, not only in an educational context.

Inge Ignatia de Waard: At the moment I work as the elearning coordinator at the Institute of Tropical Medicine Antwerpen (ITM), Belgium and I am involved in educational research with Athabasca University in Canada. I have been immersed in eLearning from 1999 onward, with ever increasing passion. After a rocky learning start right up to late twenties, I managed to end up with a background in IT and pedagogy. Thanks to many wonderful people and institutes I have had the privilege to speak on the subject of TELearning, MOOCs and mLearning across different continents. I am a firm believer in connecting with each other, so feel free to get into a conversation. For me MOOCs are an ideal way for organizing expert knowledge exchange, community strengthening and train-the-trainer options. Online resources: MobiMOOC course: http://mobimooc.wikispaces.com eLearning blog: http://ignatiawebs.blogspot.com Twitter: @ignatia
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/ingedewaard Presentations: http://www.slideshare.net/ignatia/presentations Publications: http://www.ingedewaard.net/pubconsulpres.htm

Carol Yeager: I am a practicing artist as well as a life long learner. I have been associated with SUNY since 1989. For 8 years I was traveling and teaching for ESC's International Programs in Europe, Greece and Lebanon. In addition to my life and travel as an artist, and my work with SUNY, I can also be found working on Broadway shows in Manhattan from time to time. I discovered long ago that moving targets are hard to hit - so I keep moving!! In my spare time I have been, to name a few other pursuits, a magazine editor, a designer, real estate agent, writer, paralegal, painter, carpenter and a farmer ... I have recently completed another graduate degree, an MS, through the ICSC program in Creativity and Change Leadership at SUNY/Buffalo State. Expanding my horizons as a life long learner offers great adventure now and for the future.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Tonight - Ron Ritchhart on "Making Thinking Visible"

Join me today, Tuesday, September 25th, for a one-hour live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Ron Ritchhart on his new book, Making Thinking Visible: How to Promote Engagement, Understanding, and Independence for All Learners. Ron has been a researcher at Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School of Education since 1994. His research focuses on understanding how to develop, nurture, and sustain thoughtful learning environments for both students and teachers. His interest in “cultures of thinking” has lead him to conduct research in such areas as intellectual character, mindfulness, thinking dispositions,  teaching for understanding, creativity in teaching, and the development of communities of practice. (Bio from Ron's website.)

"How can classrooms become places of intellectual stimulation where learning is viewed not in test scores but in the development of individuals who can think, plan, create, question, and engage independently as learners?

"Making Thinking Visible offers educators research-based solutions for creating just such cultures of thinking. This innovative book unravels the mysteries of thinking and its connection to understanding and engagement. It then takes readers inside diverse learning environments to show how thinking can be made visible at any grade level and across all subject areas through the use of effective questioning, listening, documentation, and facilitative structures called thinking routines. These routines, designed by researchers at Project Zero at Harvard, scaffold and support one's thinking. By applying these processes, thinking becomes visible as learners' ideas are expressed, discussed, and reflected upon." (From the book's back cover.)


Date: Tuesday, September 25th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-25.1344.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/makingthinkingvisible.mp3.
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found HERE.

Ron Ritchhart's research is classroom and school-based, believing that teaching is a complex art and science that must be understood in context.  A strong theme of learning from best practice runs throughout much of Ron’s work. On many of the projects on which Ron has worked, he has produced videos of best practices related to teaching for understanding, creative and innovative teaching, and the use of thinking routines.

Prior to joining the Project Zero research group, Ron taught for fourteen years.  He began his teaching career in New Zealand teaching 35 six and seven year olds in a state school in Christchurch as part of a teaching internship program.  From there he taught art in Indiana before moving to Denver, Colorado where he taught third and fourth grade.  Frustrated with the way he was teaching mathematics, Ron pursued a mathematics education degree and later taught middle school mathematics. In 1993 he received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Secondary Mathematics Teaching.

Ron earned his Ed.D. degree (2000) in human development and psychology from Harvard University. Ron's research on how teachers create thoughtful learning environments that support the development of students' intellectual character was the basis for his book: Intellectual Character: What it is, Why it matters, How to get it.  His framework for understanding group culture detailed have been influential in shaping education in schools and museums throughout the world.  His new book, Making Thinking Visible, explores how teachers around the world have been using the ideas of Ron and his colleagues at Project Zero to improve students’ learning.

Prior to attending Harvard, he earned an Master or Arts degree (1990) in curriculum and instruction from the University of Colorado at Denver, and a Bachelor of Science degree in education from Indiana University.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Student Voices - Nikhil Goyal on "One Size Does Not Fit All" + Panel Discussion

Join me Monday, September 24th, for a one-hour live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with returning guest Nikhil Goydal about his book, One Size Does Not Fit All: A Student’s Assessment of School. "17-year-old Nikhil Goyal offers a ground-breaking prescription for transforming American schools. Drawing from hundreds of interviews with renowned thinkers like Howard Gardner, Seth Godin, Dan Pink, Noam Chomsky, Diane Ravitch, and Frank Bruni, Goyal calls to radically redefine the way the country does schooling. From implementing an anti-disciplinary curriculum to reinventing the teaching profession, his propositions are timely and provocative. Goyal walks us through the tenets of the system, shattering claims dispersed in the education conversation" (from the publishers website). Nikhil's biography is below.

Immediately following the interview (but in a different Blackboard Collaborate room), Zak Malamed will lead a Student Voice panel discussion for students, parents, teachers and others to reflect upon and discuss what happened during yesterday's NBC’s Education Nation Student Town Hall. The discussion will give participants the opportunity to reflect on the Town Hall and discuss what can be done to enhance and empower the student voice nationwide. Student Voice is a grassroots organization that works to unite and elevate the student voice. This support network serves to aid and empower students in their efforts to be heard and earn their rightful seat at the table.

NIKHIL GOYAL ON ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL
Date: Monday, September 24th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-24.1726.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/nikhilgoyal.mp3.
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found HERE.

STUDENT VOICE PANEL
Date: Monday, September 24th, 2012
Time: 6pm Pacific / 9pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at https://sas.elluminate.com/m.jnlp?sid=2008350&password=M.40E340B18D367B371CAFC8A55F38F4. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-24.1738.M.1BE474FB83E2CCCD242DEFEE257675.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 file is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/studentvoice.mp3.

Nikhil Goyal's work has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fox and Friends, Fox Business: Varney & Co., NBC, Forbes, and Huffington Post.

Nikhil has spoken to thousands at conferences and TEDx events around the world from Qatar to Spain and has guest lectured at Baruch College in New York. He is leading a Learning Revolution movement to transform the American school system. A senior at Syosset High School, Nikhil lives with his family in Woodbury, New York.

Zak Malamed is an 18-year-old advocate for the student voice in education policy. He is the organizer of the #StuVoice Twitter chats and StuVoice.org. These efforts focus on uniting and centralizing the student voice. Futhermore, Student Voice provides a support network of students worldwide that will work with students and for students to enhance and empower the student voice.

A graduate of Great Neck South High School, Malamed served as Class President for three years and Student Government President for one year. He also served as Long Island Regional Director and Political Director for the New York High School Democrats. During the summer, he works for The Lanier Law Firm, PLLC. Malamed also serves on the Do Something Youth Advisory Council and is working closely with local politicians to develop youth advisory cabinets. In 2012, he received both the NASSP/Herff Jones Principal's Leadership Award and awards from the Long Island Press for his work as a high school journalist. He will be a freshman Government and Politics major at the University of Maryland, College Park.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Thursday Webinar - Schools That Change Communities

Join me Thursday, September 20th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with returning guest Bob Gliner about his new film, Schools That Change Communities. "While the classroom as a vehicle for educational success remains largely unchallenged, despite often questionable levels of achievement, a few public schools across the country are trying a different approach to engaging students in the learning process, using the communities and neighborhoods where students live as classrooms - creating not only a different type of learning environment, but a different kind of student. This documentary has the potential to refocus the national debate around the direction educational reform should take."

Also joining us will be rural-school Principal Dana McCauley, who's school is featured in the film and who has: "inspired the development of a culture at the rural school in which character education is part of daily routines. Her success in this endeavor earned Crellin Elementary the distinction of receiving the Ernest L. Boyer Best Practices in Character Education Award in 2008. In leading her community to build a history-themed school playground while also coordinating a stream restoration project, McCauley organized the Crellin Community Corps of Discovery. Composed of school staff members, students, community members, and representatives of agencies and organizations, the Corps seeks to engage students in meaningful learning opportunities. Its efforts have resulted in the creation of an outdoor classroom for Crellin Elementary’s 84 students. This five-and-a-half-acre learning site is the Crellin Environmental Education Laboratory. The Environmental Protection Agency awarded McCauley’s school the President’s Environmental Youth Award in 2007. In addition, the Maryland Association of Environment Outdoor Education named Crellin Elementary a Maryland Green School. McCauley holds a B.S. and an M.Ed. from Frostburg University in Maryland and an Ed.D. from West Virginia University." (Bio courtesy of naesp.)

Date: Thursday, September 20th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-20.1729.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording will be available shortly after the show at http://www.futureofeducation.com.
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found HERE.



Bob Gliner is an award winning documentary producer with more than 40 programs to his credit. His programs have appeared on PBS stations throughout the United States and have also been shown to classes in a wide variety of university and public school settings, as well as by nonprofit organizations. His primary focus is social problems and social change - both inside the United States and throughout the world. He has shot programs in such disparate locales as Russia, Macedonia, Viet Nam, India, Tanzania, Israel, Ecuador, and Cuba. He is competent in all aspects of the production process from initial stages of researching and organizing the production to script writing, interviewing, camera and editing. He is also a professor of sociology at San Jose State University in San Jose, California.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

It's Not Too Late to Submit to Present at the Library 2.012 Worldwide Conference

Proposals for the free Library 2.012 Worldwide Virtual Conference were due at the end of last week (September 15th), but since the conference dates are earlier this year, we know that the submission process for many of you has been smack dab at the start of the school year--and you may have been too overwhelmed to get your proposal in.

If this is the case for you, we really hope you will still consider submitting to present! There is a post-deadline submission process, giving you an additional week to submit your presentation proposal. Post-deadline submissions must be received by September 22, 2012, and are being considered after the full review of those submitted on time. Acceptances will be contingent on available conference time slots and given in order of submission date, but we will make every effort to accommodate all presentations because of the conference focus on inclusiveness and participation.

To submit a proposal go online to http://www.library20.com/page/proposal-submission-2012.

Last year's conference had just under 10,000 attendee log-ins from all over the world, and we expect this year to be even bigger. The Library 2.012 Worldwide Virtual Conference presentations will cover six amazing subject strands, which you can view HERE. Proposed presentations can be found HERE, and currently accepted presentations can be found HERE.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Wednesday (Early) + Survey - What Should Students Learn in the 21st Century?

Join me at an early time on Wednesday, September 19th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Charles Fadel on "What Should Students Learn in the 21st Century?" Charles believes that before fixing the how, we should be fixing the what, and he is rethinking the curriculum and standards from the ground up. My sense is that both need to be addressed, and will enjoy hearing from Charles both on his prioritization and on the actual results of his new work as the founder & chairman at the Center for Curriculum Redesign.

Charles has created a survey he'd appreciate you filling out and your support in promoting: “This presentation will explore the stunning recent advances of technology (A.I., Robotics, Biotech) and describe their impact on jobs and society.  Creativity and innovation in particular will be explored  and contrast man vs machine. All this has profound implications for 'what students should learn in the 21st century,' and this survey https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ccrglobalopinionsteachers aims at collecting the opinions of teachers worldwide." Please consider responding and also letting others know about the survey.

Date: Wednesday, September 19th, 2012
Time: 1pm Pacific / 4pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-19.1334.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/charlesfadel0912.mp3.
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found here.

From http://curriculumredesign.org:

What should students learn in the 21st century?

The mission of the Center for Curriculum Redesign (CCR) is to answer this timely question, and openly propagate its recommendations and frameworks on a worldwide basis. The CCR brings together non-governmental organizations, jurisdictions, academic institutions, corporations, and non-profit organizations including foundations.

The last major changes to curriculum were effected in the late 1800’s as a response to the sudden growth in societal and human capital needs. As the world of the 21st century bears little resemblance to that of the 19th century, education curricula need to be deeply redesigned for the full triad of Knowledge, Skills, and Character, and keeping in the forefront the Meta-layer/fourth dimension of: learning how to learn, interdisciplinarity, etc.  Adapting to 21st century needs means revisiting each dimension and the interplay between them.

Tuesday - Jamie Vollmer on "Schools Cannot Do It Alone"

Join me Tuesday, September 18th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Jamie Vollmer, author of Schools Cannot Do It Alone: Building public Support for America's Public Schools. Jamie "has spent the last twenty years working with school districts, education associations, foundations, and chambers of commerce across the nation to halt the erosion of public trust and build support for America’s public schools. His primary goal is to help educators and their allies remove the obstacles to progress and create schools that unfold the full potential of every child." His full biography can be found here.

Date: Tuesday, September 18th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-18.1734.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/jamievollmer.mp3.
Mightybell Space: Resources, videos, links, and conversation about the interview can be found here.

From the website: Based on his twenty years of working with school districts across the country, Jamie Vollmer argues that we are at a pivotal point in our history. Public education is under attack as never before. Bashing public schools has become a blood sport—a  dangerous game in which sensational headlines publicize half-truths, statistics are used out of context, and test results are reported in the worst possible light. We are witnessing a campaign to annihilate the emotional and intellectual ties that bind the American people to their public schools. And it’s working. 

"Schools Cannot Do It Alone confronts the threats to public education, and presents a practical, doable plan to increase student success. Vollmer’s community-based program, called 'The Great Conversation,' provides step-by-step instructions to tackle the major obstacles to school improvement...

"From the first words of the Introduction, to the final chapter’s inspirational message of hope, Vollmer praises the people who work inside our schools. In clear, compelling terms, he offers, he offers a plan to help them gain the public support they need to prepare all children to succeed in the knowledge age. He argues with passion that America’s teachers and administrators are ready and able to meet the challenges of our time, but they cannot do it alone."

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Thursday - Shelly Blake-Plock on Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Making Stuff

Join me Thursday, September 13th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Shelly Blake-Plock, Co-Executive Director of  the Digital Harbor Foundation (dhf), " a Baltimore-based nonprofit working to foster a culture of innovation, tech advancement, and entrepreneurship through local and global education initiatives" (from their website).  Additionally, "by providing support, services, and mentoring for k-12 students and recent college graduates in the field of technology, dhf strengthens the innovation economy of the greater baltimore area while effecting change in the global conversation about education in the digital age."

Shelly closed up his TeachPaperless blog this summer, as well as his formal classroom teaching career, to help the dhf found a series of community education and technology centers in Baltimore. His parting advice to teachers and students:  "[G]o make stuff. Stop jumping through hoops. There is a world out there and there are a million different ways of becoming educated. You don't have to follow their rules. Go out there and make stuff. Stuff that matters. Stuff that makes people smile. Stuff that changes the way other people do things. Stuff that's beautiful. Stuff that's ugly. Stuff. Stuff you make. Stuff that reflects who you are rather than what they want you to be."

Date: Thursday, September 13th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-13.1703.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/shellyblakeplock.mp3.
Mightybell Discussion and Resource Space: https://mightybell.com/spaces/c3c0383de392e8f3

Monday, September 10, 2012

Tuesday - Pat Farenga on John Holt and Homeschooling

Join me Tuesday, September 11th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Patrick Farenga, author of Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book Of Homeschooling. Pat worked closely with author and teacher John Holt for four years, until Holt’s death in 1985. He is the President of Holt Associates Inc. and was the Publisher of Growing Without Schooling magazine (GWS) from 1985 until it stopped publishing in Nov. 2001. GWS was the nation’s first periodical about homeschooling, started by Holt in 1977.

Date: Tuesday, September 11th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-11.1704.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/patfarenga.mp3.
Mightybell Discussion and Resource Space: https://mightybell.com/spaces/8a275ee029708258

Pat Farenga and his wife have three girls, ages 23, 20, and 17. In addition to writing for GWS for twenty years, he has written many articles and book chapters for publications as diverse as Mothering magazine, Paths of Learning magazine, Home Education Magazine, The Bulletin of Science, Technology, and Society and The Encyclopedia of School Administration. He has also published and edited several popular books about homeschooling including his own book, The Beginner’s Guide To Homeschooling. Farenga’s recent work includes a cassette tape, A History of Homeschooling and How You Can Become Part of It (Tape one of The Singing Turtle Homeschool Starter Kit, 2002) and a chapter in A Parent’s Guide To Homeschooling (Mars Publishing, 2002). His most recent book is Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book of Homeschooling (Perseus, May 2003). Farenga wrote the article about homeschooling for the International Encyclopedia of Education, 3rd Edition, due in Fall, 2009.

Farenga also appears on local and national television and radio shows as a homeschooling expert; he has appeared on The Today Show, The Voice of America, NPR's The Merrow Report, and CNN's Parenting Today. Farenga has been quoted as an expert on homeschooling many times in the national media. Farenga has addressed audiences about homeschooling and the work of John Holt throughout the United States, Canada, England, and Italy.

Farenga now works as a writer, speaker, and education consultant. Visit www.patfarenga.com for the latest writing and information about Pat's work

Friday, September 07, 2012

Submit Your Proposals for the Library 2.012 Worldwide Virtual Conference!

Proposals for the free Library 2.012 Worldwide Virtual Conference are due at the end of next week (September 15th), and we really hope you will consider submitting to present if you live in the library world or your work is related! Last year's conference had just under 10,000 attendee log-ins from all over the world!

Because the conference dates are earlier this year, we know that the submission process for many of you is smack dab at the start of the school year, and you may be (are likely!) overwhelmed with all that you are doing. But we do want to hear from you, and hope you will find 15 minutes to submit a proposal online at http://www.library20.com/page/proposal-submission-2012.

If the deadline of September 15 is absolutely out of the question, don't panic. There is a post-deadline submission process, giving you an additional week to submit your presentation proposal. Post-deadline submissions must be received by September 22, 2012, and will be considered only after the full review of those submitted on time. Acceptances will be contingent on available conference time slots and given in order of submission date.

The Library 2.012 Worldwide Virtual Conference presentations will cover six amazing subject strands, which you can view HERE. Proposed presentations can be found HERE, and currently accepted presentations can be found HERE.

To sign up for the International Advisory Board and to help promote the conference in your area, please make sure you have joined the Library 2.0 online network, and then join the advisory board group specifically HERE.

To be a Volunteer and to help moderate sessions (our heroes!), make sure you have joined the Library 2.0 online network and then join the volunteer group HERE.

Non-commercial organizations can also receive recognition as Conference Partners in return for publicizing and promoting conference participation and attendance. To apply to be a conference partner organization, please make sure you have joined the Library 2.0 online network, and then join the partner group specifically  HERE.

Commercial Sponsor opportunities can be discussed with me directly at 
steve@hargadon.com or 916-283-7901. Our continued thanks to Dr. Sandra Hirsh Professor, Co-Chair of the Library 2.012 and Director of the School of Library and Information Science at San Jose State University, the founding conference sponsor!

Please do share this announcement with colleagues and friends!

See you online!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

The "Hack Your Education" City-by-City Tour

THE INFORMATION IN THIS BLOG POST IS NOT CURRENT - PLEASE GO TO HTTP://WWW.HACKYOUREDUCATION.COM

Next week I'm going on the road to try out an idea. I want to see if I can make a difference by cultivating local conversations on education, and to learn some things in the process. I've listed below some different ways that I could use some help, and am hoping to find some "kindred spirits" to make this possible.

Here's my tentative schedule:
  • September 12:  Redwood City, CA
  • September 14 - 15:  Portland, OR
  • September 21 - 22:  Seattle, WA
  • October 19 - 20:  Sacramento, CA (or Chicago, IL)
  • October 25 - 27:  New York, NY
  • November 2 - 3:  Boston, MA
  • November 9 - 10:  Philadelphia, PA
  • November 16 - 17:  Washington, DC
  • November 30 - December 1:  Los Angeles, CA
  • December 7 - 8:  Phoenix, AZ
Here's what I'm planning for each city:
  • Friday Night:  
    • 5pm local time - Live recording of weekly podcast with Audrey Watters of Hack Education. Mostly this will involve bringing Audrey in remotely, but in some of the cities she may be able to join us.
    • 6pm local time - Picnic / brown-bag dinner with anyone who would like to join us.
    • 7pm local time - Community education discussion - Tentatively titled "Your Child Is Not Defective" - 2 hours. A participative workshop particularly for those feeling dispossessed or discouraged by the current educational system, designed to provide a meaningful path forward to improve personal or community educational opportunities. This will be an open, comforting, and hopefully empowering event.
  • Saturday 
    • 8am - 3pm - "Hack Your Education" workshop for students, teachers, parents, and/or administrators. The focus is on how to use Web 2.0 and social media for your personal, educational, and professional growth. The word "hack" has a couple of cultural connotations: first, it means to find a way to do something that may not be fancy, but gets the job done; second, it can mean an attempt to subvert the existing system. There's something of both in "Hack Your Education." We'll walk through building a personal learning network, creating your online personal learning environment, managing your digital profile, and cultivating your personal passions and life purposes. If the goal of education is learning how to learn, then students and adults alike face similar challenges and unique opportunities, and this is a chance to define your own independent learning goals and your personal educational or career path.
Here's some help I need:
  • I'd like some feedback on the Friday night workshop title, "Your Child Is Not Defective." I know there are a lot of different opinions about how to promote educational improvement. After over 300 interviews on education, I've come to a conclusion: that the message of educational change cannot center on the elite. In fact, I believe that trying to convince policy-makers and/or those who have had success in the existing system is not likely to have any real impact, as we have seen the overwhelming narratives for political discussion on both sides of the aisle increasingly revolve around high-stakes accountability... and not around the inherent worth and value of every child, and not in the belief that the ultimate goal of education is to develop the ability for students to take responsibility for their own lives and become increasingly self-directed. If I am right, we need to find a way to help pull out of deep discouragement the huge number of parents and students that are told that they are failures, and to give them hope that learning is not an arbitrary gift bestowed capriciously to a select few but is something anyone can own, and is infinitely better when so discovered. While I believe this disproportionately affects those in poverty, I don't think by any means that it's exclusive to any one group. Does this title provide a compelling entry point to the topic? 
  • That being said, I'm not sure how to bring the dispossessed and discouraged audience together. I'm willing to start small (we may be really small!), and to figure out as we go along how to get the word out and bring more people to the table. If you have ideas, let me know. I'm looking for simple, no-frills ways of finding and helping those who feel this way. Community centers? "Under-performing" or alternative schools? Religious communities? Help?!
  • I'll also need to find meeting spaces in each city. I'm willing to meet in a living room, a classroom, a library--anywhere someone who cares about improving the education conversation in this country is willing to arrange. If you can help in one of the cities on the dates above, email me at steve@hargadon.com. (If you really care about this and your city is not on the above list, reach out and let's talk.) I will need space both for Friday night and Saturday, and they don't have to be in the same place--but the Saturday venue needs to have access to the Internet (without filtering Web 2.0 / social media sites).
  • I'm not doing this to make money, but if you can think of a creative way for me to fund this travel, let me know at the above email address. I'll ask for donations for the Saturday workshop, but don't want anyone not to come because they can't afford it. If the first month of this experiment works, perhaps I'll start a crowd-source funding campaign. If your school/library/organization wants to sponsor the Saturday event, that would be great. For the cities where Audrey might join us, we'd need to fund her travel as well.
OK. Wish me luck. 

Thursday Live - Me on the Future of Education

Tomorrow, Thursday, September 6th, I'm the guest on the weekly ConnectedLearning.tv webinar series, the topic being "The Future of Education"--a look at the social narrative of today's and tomorrow's education system, and asking what shifts in education will (and should) we see in the next 5, 10, 20 years?

I'm intrigued by the photo that was chosen for the interview (posted here). My goal is to talk about my observations of the education conversation after: conducting over 300 live and public interviews; consulting for for-profit, non-profit, and governmental organizations; and now having run several massively open online conferences (and you thought MOOC stood for something else? :)  I anticipate a terrific conversation, hopefully with some ideas and thoughts that are valuable.

Date: Thursday, September 6th, 2012
Event Link:  http://connectedlearning.tv/steve-hargadon-the-future-of-education
Time: 8am Pacific / 11am Eastern (international times here)
Location:
Mightybell Discussion and Resource Space: https://mightybell.com/spaces/3228dc4146f91299

Monday, September 03, 2012

Thursday - Angie McAllister on How Academic Networking and Learning Analytics Can Help "Learning How to Learn"

Join me Thursday, September 6th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Angie McAllister, the Director of Data Innovation at Apollo Group, where she specializes in building adaptive learning systems for adult learners. Angie is an educator who has served for 21 years in public and private sectors as a teacher, administrator, and instructional designer in the US and abroad. She teaches courses in leadership theory, strategic management, leadership ethics, research methodology, and business communications.

Angie's specializes in the design and development of hyper-personalized learning ecosystems that enhance the educational experience and improve learning outcomes—particularly for more than 400,000 current working adult learners at University of Phoenix. We'll talk about what she is learning from running what they call the "largest academic social network anywhere;" the ethical responsibilities of how and when information is surfaced as a part of "learning analytics;" the need for more wisdom rather than just data; mentorship projects for adult learners; and the connection with "learning how to learn" and students driving their own learning in an era of "hyper-personalization."

Date: Thursday, September 6th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-06.1728.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/angiemcallister.mp3.
Mightybell Discussion and Resource Space: https://mightybell.com/spaces/01d3ea69361bede0

Tuesday - Ron Wolk on "Wasting Minds"

Join me Tuesday, September 4th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com webinar with Ron Wolk, to discuss his book Wasting Minds: Why Our Education System Is Failing and What We Can Do About It. 

Currently Chairman at Big Picture Learning, and the founder and former editor of Education Week, Teacher Magazine, and Quality Counts, "Wolk draws on three decades spent in the school reform trenches to question the common assumptions about the U.S. education system. Instead of calling for more reform efforts, Wolk makes the case for a new schooling strategy where students break free of the failing assembly line approach to learning and receive the individualized instruction they deserve."

Wolk "insists that the dominant reform efforts have not closed the student achievement gap, reduced the 'scandalous' dropout rate, or even improved schools. Wolk asserts that simply introducing new practices and reforms to the existing education system will not work—the system is broken beyond repair." (Quotes from the ASCD press release).

Date: Tuesday, September 4th, 2012
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recordings: The full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2012-09-04.1719.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and a portable .mp3 audio is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/ronwolk.mp3.
Mightybell Discussion and Resource Space: https://mightybell.com/spaces/e6f7e84d2bc72e7b

Ron's autobiography:  "In September 1981, I started Education Week. Since then I’ve spent virtually every waking moment reading about, thinking about, and writing about education.

"Over the years, I visited hundreds of schools—some so bad they made me weep, and some so good they made me weep. I attended countless meetings, often with the brightest people in the field, and I learned from them. And, from the editor’s seat at Education Week and Teacher Magazine, I had a ringside view of the education reform movement in its first 20 years.

"For most of my professional life I’ve had one foot in journalism and one in education. I spent the 1960s at the Johns Hopkins University, first as editor of the Johns Hopkins Magazine, then as assistant to President Milton S. Eisenhower.

"I also served as vice president of Brown University from 1969 to 1978 where I was responsible for external affairs and institutional advancement.

"Both of those jobs were so gratifying and rewarding that I came to believe with John Masefield that 'There is no earthly place more splendid than a university.'

"Between my stints at Johns and Brown, I served on two national commissions; The Carnegie Commission on the Future of Higher Education under the leadership of Clark Kerr, the former and brilliant President of the University of California; and then National Commission on the Causes and Prevention of Violence, established by President Lyndon Johnson in the wake of the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert F. Kennedy. Milton Eisenhower led that effort and he summoned me from California for one of the most interesting assignments of my life.

"I left Brown in 1978 to take over the presidency of Editorial Projects in Education. My predecessor and dear friend, Corbin Gwaltney, hired me for the Johns Hopkins Magazine job and taught me a great deal about creative journalism.

"As chairman of the board of EPE during the 1960’s, I worked closely with Corbin and helped create and launch the Chronicle of Higher Education.

"After nearly 20 years at EPE/Education Week, I retired and moved to Rhode Island, fully intending to leave education reform behind. But that was not to be.

"As the new century was beginning, I succeeded Ted Sizer as chair of Big Picture Learning in Providence, which was led by Dennis Littky and Elliot Washor—two of the most innovative and daring men I’ve ever worked with. Under contract with the state, the duo designed and launched the Metropolitan Career and Technical Academy, a one-of-a-kind high school that became the model for some 70 schools established by Big Picture in the U.S. and abroad. Tom Vander Ark of the Gates Foundation dubbed the Met his 'favorite high school' in the country and Gates made multimillion contributions to Big Picture’s work.

"When I took over from Ted Sizer, I had already become disillusioned with the school reform movement and deeply pessimistic about the future of public education. Working with Big Picture and the Met, I saw that imagination and hard work could help the neediest kids educate themselves, and I began to hope again that we can create public schools that work.

"The old cliché is that pessimists see the glass half empty and optimists see the glass half full. I am neither. Regarding public education, I am an idealist: I see the glass as it is and can’t accept the fact that it is not full."