about being special

Recently a colleague was voicing some frustrations. He works in an environment where most people he works with are some sort of expert. He finds himself frustrated when folks he works with don’t know things that he considers to be “basic”. So I asked him if he thinks he is special. “No. Do you think you’re special?” I told him I believe there is no one more special than I am. My specialness is something I get to share with other people. If I don’t believe I am special, I wouldn’t really expect anyone else to think I am either. … Continue reading about being special

about online shared spaces

When I was in high school we had a snack bar and a lounge called the fishbowl. These were public spaces but generally understood to be student lounges or congregating areas. There were also spaces right outside of the teacher’s offices, the “outer offices”. Students might be found in these spaces waiting to meet or get help from teachers. These weren’t exactly the teacher offices, but they also weren’t classrooms. So between hallways and stairwells, the outer offices, the snack bar, the fishbowl, etc. there were many spaces within the learning environment where teachers and students interacted, and each of … Continue reading about online shared spaces

about the Green Schools Conference & Expo

For the past several years my colleagues and I have been working with secondary environmental science teachers on developing curriculum materials which integrate learning technologies and inquiry-based learning models in science education. I was very proud this past week to accompany a pair of these teachers to the national Green Schools Conference & Expo to showcase how their learners use mobile and digital technologies to investigate and report on environmental issues in their communities. Cheers Gents, I am very proud of the work we’ve been doing together! Continue reading about the Green Schools Conference & Expo

about being a Visiting Scholar

I was invited this past week by the Department of Cognitive and Learning Sciences and the Center for Teaching and Learning at Michigan Technological University to offer a series of lectures, workshops, and forums on the use of social media in learning experiences and on academic presences in online spaces. I gave a talk to the  Applied Cognitive Science and Human Factors Forum about Taking Presence Online. Juxtaposing the notions of Native-Immigrant with  Visitor-Resident I invited the participants to consider different ways they are resident online, how they participate in those spaces, and how they might identify and honour different types of engagement in online spaces. I … Continue reading about being a Visiting Scholar

about what centers me…

I was recently asked a very interesting question in regards to my work as an educator and scholar, what centers me. Answering this question first made me think how I understood the question theoretically. As a learning technologist, finding innovative ways to integrating technology into teaching and learning experiences is at the core of much of what I do. From a constructivist perspective, I believe it is important that learners engage in experiences in such a way that they are creating meaning of their world for themselves. Within the classroom this may mean that although we are having a shared … Continue reading about what centers me…