Wednesday, November 09, 2005

A New Conceptual Framework?

Why is this so hard for me?

Another conceptual framework:
writing and audience
media literacy
social constructivism
or democratizes education

Questions: How does this social software, or tool, impact students' thinking, reading, and writing?

It's social. They connect with each other. They connect knowledge.
Their writing has an authentic audience.

Writing and Audience
The potential of the internet coincides with many beliefs about teaching writing. How will students and teachers tap into that potential? Most teachers believe that publishing student work is important. But finding ways to do that can be difficult. Web logs are an option in publishing work globally while also expanding a student’s perception of audience. Most teachers believe that audience is very important in writing well, and many teachers believe that writing suffers when teachers are the only audience. So the web logs open their writing to a global audience.

According to Seely (2000), “The new literacy, beyond text and image, is one of information navigation. The real literacy of tomorrow entails the ability to be your own personal reference librarian-to know how to navigate through confusing, complex information spaces and feel comfortable doing so. "Navigation" may well be the main form of literacy for the 21st century.” Navigation is important, but what about understanding that navigation and having an awareness of how to read the media.

The use of the internet and synchronous and asynchronous technology will only increase. As educators, should we continue to solely depend on pencil and paper writing when so much of the work they do in college and eventually in the workplace may be centered in a more technological realm? Siemens (2005) suggests a new learning theory for the digital age: connectivism. He explains that the connections that people make between information is what is important know. He asserts that language is no longer internal, but a wide variety and amount of information exists, add that to the fact that “knowledge” is changing so quickly that it doesn’t “last” as long as it did previously.

For students in classroom with web logs, the information they learn may be far beyond the spectrum of what the teacher “knows” or “teaches.” Through a case study approach, I hope to follow the class as the blog about the literature they read in class, following their writing, reading, and thinking as they comment and respond to one another via web log.

How do they link knowledge?
How they use the web log in ways that the teacher did not assign?

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