Aloha! My journey through a world of endless possibilities continued today with visits to Cooliris, Jing, Ning, Skitch, Picnik, Glogster, Big Huge Labs, and other points west (and east, north, and south!) I appreciated the time to be able to sightsee and explore and have definitely planned some returned visits.
The first big idea for me today was the end of the end or, what I’m referring to as to be continued… When Alec Couros mentioned that with texting the “conversation doesn’t really end” (it’s not like a phone call where you hang-up) I realized that a fundamental shift in thinking is underfoot, and it extends far beyond mobile devices. With endless possibilities, the days of someone being able to figure things out and have it stay figured out are over. Things simply change too fast. I have to learn to be satisfied with today’s journey and realize it’s part of a much bigger evolving process.
The second big idea for me today came in thinking about a personal learning network (PLN) compared to my experiences with a professional learning community (PLC). One of my concerns with PLCs has been that they tend to feel slightly forced and created from the top down – they just don’t feel authentic to me. In concept, I thing they’re a great idea, but in practice I haven’t been as eager to spend what little valuable time I have on them. When I began to build my PLN, I immediately noticed a difference as I felt the process was both organic and meaningful to me. Now I was connecting with people that had similar interests or experiences as me. Not only was advice offered, but I was challenged to refine my ideas, and even asked to reply to some of their concerns. Instead of it simply being school or district based I now have access to a collective wisdom I could only dream about before. Thanks to everyone who commented on my last post for your sage advice and thought provoking questions.
I’m aware that my comments on PLCs are only one point-of-view and only represent my particular experiences at a point in time. As a filmmaker I know the importance of point of view. This led me to consider how do we come to know young people’s points-of-view? If we give them cameras they get to choose what is important to them – powerful stuff I think!
To be continued…