Michael Wesch: It’s a ‘Pull, Pull’ World — from The Journal by John K. Waters


“We have to recognize in our society that the new media we see in our environment are not just new means of communication, not just tools,” he told attendees at the Campus Technology 2011 conference in July. “Media change what can be said, how it can be said, who can say it, who can hear it, and what messages will count as information and knowledge.”

Wesch compared the need to “re-inspire curiosity and imagination” in students with bridging the digital divide.

“We’ve talked for years about the digital divide and how, if you’re on the wrong side of that technology access gap, you get left behind,” he said. “I think there’s the potential now for a kind of curiosity gap. Consider how much further ahead a curious student will be, compared with a student who lacks curiosity, in an environment in which he or she can reach out and grab new knowledge anytime, anywhere on all kinds of devices. If you’re a curious person, you’ll learn and grow; if you’re not, you could just drift along while others race ahead.”

From Daniel Christian: Fasten your seatbelts! An accelerated ride through some ed-tech landscapes.

From DSC:
Immediately below is a presentation that I did for the Title II Conference at Calvin College back on August 11, 2011
It is aimed at K-12 audiences.


Daniel S. Christian presentation -- Fasten your seatbelts! An accelerated ride through some ed-tech landscapes (for a K-12 audience)


From DSC:
Immediately below is a presentation that I did today for the Calvin College Fall 2011 Conference.
It is aimed at higher education audiences.


 Daniel S. Christian presentation -- Fasten your seatbelts! An accelerated ride through some ed-tech landscapes (for a higher ed audience)


Note from DSC:

There is a great deal of overlap here, as many of the same technologies are (or will be) hitting the K-12 and higher ed spaces at the same time. However, there are some differences in the two presentations and what I stressed depended upon my audience.

Pending time, I may put some audio to accompany these presentations so that folks can hear a bit more about what I was trying to relay within these two presentations.

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What are digital literacies? Let’s ask the students — from DMLcentral.net by Cathy Davidson


What Are Digital Literacies?  Let’s Ask the Students Blog Image


It was with these critiques in mind that I asked undergraduate students in my two classes, “This Is Your Brain on the Internet” and “Twenty-First Century Literacies” to come up with a list of skills they had mastered in my peer-driven, peer-assessed, peer-led classes they had not gained elsewhere.  We might call these skills “digital literacies.”

Check out their list, and then tell me if you recognize those self-absorbed, no-nothing, isolated, and distracted students described by the pundits.  To my mind, this is a list of digital literacies any of us might aspire to:


From DSC:
Though I saw this posted at a variety of blogs/social learning sites,
it’s definitely worth relaying here for those who might have missed it.


Digital skills in Higher Education - Spring 2011

April 2011:
Hear from analyst Ellen Wagner as she covers research showing the expansion of technology in higher education. Evolving expectations for digital skills for students and faculty require use of technology that have traditionally been used by art and design schools.









Also see:


Educated Citizen [Brian Kuhn, Canada]

Educated Citizen — from Brian Kuhn (Canada)

Also see:

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Banned in School — from The Innovative Educator by Lisa Nielsen

From DSC:

This item caught my eye because this very sort of thing prevented me from helping some of our remote student teachers this week. The schools that they were in did not permit access to the servers that provided web-based collaboration software.  The reasons I picked up from the email-based correspondence was that the schools were concerned about the misuse of such technologies — based upon actual acts of digital vandalism they had occurred at their schools or other schools.

Though I understand the concerns of the administrations — especially in light of the litigious society that we live in — I couldn’t help but reflect upon how incredibly unfortunate that — again — a small percentage of bad apples ruins it for the rest of the students.

What can we do to promote better digital citizenship? Ethics? Morality?

I agree with Lisa when she asserts that it is no longer acceptable to have disconnected teaching and learning environments. It is not ultimately beneficial to ban teachers and students from the Internet.

P.S. If we can’t help our student teachers out in such matters, it makes change all the more difficult to implement.

The following airs Sunday, February 13, 2011 at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT:

Digital Media -- to be on PBS 2-13-11

Digital Media – New Learners Of The 21st Century  Digital Media: Chapter 1

Chapter 1 features experts in the field of digital media and its use in education.
Chapter one of Digital Media: New Learners of the 21st Century criss-crosses the nation to highlight real-life examples of how digital media is exploding in educational environments.

Originally seen at startl.org

Digital Media and Technology in Afterschool Programs, Libraries, and Museums
Becky Herr-Stephenson, Diana Rhoten, Dan Perkel, and Christo Sims — with contributions from Anne Balsamo, Maura Klosterman, and Susana Smith Bautista
© 2011 Massachusetts Institute of Technology | The MIT Press | Cambridge, Massachusetts | London, England


This report synthesizes research and examples of the diverse ways in which organizations approach and integrate digital media and technology into their youth programs, practices, and philosophies. We aim to clarify a framework for understanding organizational efforts related to digital media and technology and to establish a foundation for future research in this area. Our guiding questions for this report are:

  • How have digital media and technology been incorporated into youth programs within educational, civic, and cultural organizations, including afterschool programs, libraries, and museums?
  • What types of participation and learning do digital media and technology support and/or complicate within these organizations?
  • How can research in the area of digital media and learning contribute to better integration of technology within individual organizations and better coordination via technology among organizations?

USA Today puts good news on the front page, places the rise in U.S. living standards in perspective — from forbes.com by Stuart Anderson

Everyone knows bad news sells better than good news. But since good news so rarely gets reported it seems USA Today decided to turn conventional wisdom on its head and report on its front page not only good news but data that place in historical context just how well Americans live today. (Find article here.)


From DSC:
As I make my (almost) daily trip to Starbuck’s and enter into the coffee store, I often see the newspapers on my way to get my cup of coffee. The front pages always “feature” some photo of someone’s  violent actions (blood, war, protests, murder, etc.)  — some piece of the latest “death and dying” report. I can’t stand the agenda that this pushes — making money off of the hardships of others and depicting a world that is full of violence, chaos, and worthlessness.

I have long prayed for those in media to use their media to bring glory to God and to use the POWER that they have to help edify others (i.e. build them up) — and to make the world a better place to live in. Too many journalists just go along with their company’s agenda to make the most money possible — instead of trying to make the world a better place and to do the right thing. The sort of agenda often being pushed by the news organizations reminds me of a Philip Morris type of plan — making money off of others’ deaths.

It always bothers me when I see the glimmer of excitement in the broadcasters’ eyes/voices when they just got the “scoop” on some new murder, or murder trial or fight. What I would rather see is the broadcaster’s somber countenance — being one of dismay or sadness. (As we are all in this boat together.)

Now…bringing this reflection/rant closer to home:

  • With the Internet, each of us now has the ability to be our own TV station, newspaper, magazine, etc.   Let’s treat that power with respect — and try to make the world a better place to live in.
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