Is technology killing the art of conversation? 

This is an ongoing conversation, often discussed by Sherry Turkle (“Alone Together”) and others.  Killing the art of conversation?  Or changing how we interact?  There was a recent article posted on Slate about the Exact Date Telephone Conversations Disappeared which discussed the migration to text and when it happened.  In this article, Steve correctly shares the different types of conversation facilitated by technology.  It seems the big unstated question here is – what do we consider conversation?  I think the most important shift has been from the synchronous to the asynchronous, regardless of modality.  Text, posts, tweets – we don’t have to answer immediately.   We have responses that we can reflect upon (usually) before answering.  How does that change conversation?  In an online discussion, particularly in an online classroom, this is often cited as an advantage to the learner.  I agree.  One who would be reluctant to raise their hand in a classroom would have time to answer a question thoughtfully online.  I would say that technology has changed conversation.  Better?  Worse?  No….just different.

Source: Is technology killing the art of conversation? | Learning with ‘e’s

Pedagogy Before Technology – Sometimes?

Excellent article by George Couros.  I often use the phrase “Pedagogy Before Technology” and am mindful of the ways technology can get in between the learner and what is being taught.  This example is terrific though.  Sometimes technology appears that gives us new ideas about pedagogical methodologies.  Virtual reality is certainly one of those – which he refers to when he talks about Pokemon Go.  Thoughtful article worth reading, link below.



Source: Pedagogy Before Technology | Connected Principals

A Crowd-sourced List of Google Cardboard Apps & Videos


From one of my favorite sites, a list of apps and videos for your Google Cardboard – fun!  It was crowdsourced at ISTE – the International Society for Technology in Education.  No better place.  Grab your cardboard!  I am always looking for new things to do with mine.


Source: Free Technology for Teachers: A Crowd-sourced List of Google Cardboard Apps & Videos

Learning Theories: Double-Loop Learning

One of my favorite adult learning theories, Double-Loop Learning, coined by Chris Argyris, is in an article on +TeachThought .  Always interesting that theories traditionally put in the “adult” silo are more and more often applicable to any stage of learning.  Perhaps it is only the third loop, not referred to here, that is meant for adults?  Learning meant for adults and for K12 students (traditional) is getting less and less differentiated.
Loops in Triple-Loop Learning
1 – Are we doing things right?
2 – Are we doing the right things?
3 – How do we decide what is right?



<<Learning Theories: Double-Loop Learning by Steve Wheeler, Associate Professor, Plymouth Institute of Education This is the second in my series of short blog posts on important theories of learning.>>

Source: Learning Theories: Double-Loop Learning

Why e-learning is better than face-to-face learning (is it?)


This article caught my eye in my Feedly reader today.  While the author aptly describes bad e-learning, there is also bad classroom learning – and vice-versa.  Is one better than the other?  I live technology, e-learning, and online learning but I will still say that you can’t compare the two.  The only comparison?  They are both learning.  Better?  Worse?  Because of modality?  Delivery method, in my opinion, does not make learning better or worse.  This is complex and contextual concept…..but the article did catch my eye and I do agree that powerpoint slides posted on a site are not a good thing in most cases.  A good article to read regardless.  But add context, content, learner, facilitator/instructor/motivation….the list goes on.


<<learning extends beyond borders with more advantages than traditional learning, argues Ralph LaFontaine.>>

Source: Why e-learning is better than face-to-face learning

‘Aren’t MOOCs online learning?’ 


I am so happy to see Tony Bates’ article because, even years after MOOCs appeared on the scene, articles still confuse MOOCs with for-credit online courses.  They are not the same.  We access both with a computer or device, that is true.  They are both focused on learning.  Everything else?  Tony says it well….


Online learning for beginners: 3. ‘Aren’t MOOCs online learning?’ | Tony Bates

Instructional Design Must Focus on Learning Outcomes, Not Learning Activities 

<<It’s no secret that kids learn better when teachers provide learning activities that keep them engaged. Teachers work tirelessly to plan engaging lessons that capture and keep the interests of their students, thereby making content more accessible. >>

While this is definitely true in K12 learning, which is the focus of the article, it is just as relevant for higher ed and workplace learning.   Outcomes come first – they are the S.O.W. (statement of work) – the framework of the learning experience.  Everything else needs to be built based on those objectives.  Good article from Edsurge.

Source: Why Instructional Design Must Focus on Learning Outcomes, Not Learning Activities | EdSurge News