education & tech

mLearning, teacher, scholar, social media

Education + Tech

Education & Tech, was created to build hope that education based on social technologies, can transform the new century, and enable abundance not only spiritually but economically. Milton Ramirez, Ed.D. - @tonnet is the founder & editor. He is a teacher, tech blogger, writes on education, and hails this blog from Union, NJ. For further questions, tips or concerns please e-mail him to:miltonramirez [at] educationandtech [dot] com

Teacher + Scholar

If you are a regular to Blog Education & Tech, you shall remember that I am a blogger and I'd written a post about education almost everyday since 2003. Education & Tech provides you with education news, expert tech advice, classroom management ideas, and social media tools for educators, administrators, parents and k-12 students.

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Education Involves Collaboration

Yesterday, I was following online the #tedxnyed and really enjoyed that way presenters did their part. Really impressed by Jeff Jarvis, Chris Lehmann, George Siemens, Henry Jenkins, Dan Meyers and Mike Wesch -not that the others were bad, but they kept me quiet, attentive and almost fry my brain, to say it figuratively.

Lehmann said: "Schools need to be collaborative and playful." Absolutely. If kids don't experience joy going to school then teachers are in great trouble.

Lehmann's perception relates to Larry Irons vision of social learning. Irons wrote a interesting post saying that social learning is collaborative and it's linked to the large-scale changes facing organizations as they struggle to manage how people share and use knowledge.

Citing Harold Harche, Larry agrees with him to the fact that learning is relevant because school work is almost never done by one single person. School work requires collaboration of a variety of people. Is customary to blame the teachers or even fire them, when something goes wrong in education, I think we are forgetting about many other members of this community.

With his wide experience as a leader of multidisciplinary teams, the author of Skillful Minds writes that collaboration isn’t just about people:

Collaboration is about people working with other people to achieve common goals and create value. Even though goal-orientation is a big part of collaborating, collaboration requires more to achieve goals effectively. It requires shared experience. Indeed, one could reasonably assert that, as members of teams discuss their own assumptions about membership in the flow of a project, they develop increasing empathy for other team members and alignment between their own needs for information supporting performance and the willingness of others to either provide it or facilitate its provision.

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#TEDxNYED Live! - The role of new media and technology in education

TEDxNYED is being held right now at the Collegiate School in New York. The focus of TEDxNYED is examining the role of new media and technology in education. Speakers like Chris Lehmann, Dan Meyer, Lawrence Lessig, and Michael Wesch among others will be present.

All of the talks are being streamed live, for free.

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The World of e-Learning - The 2010 Horizon Report.

Learning Solutions Magazine:

Mobile computing and open content - the challenge of making as much information as openly accessible as we can - are among the technologies most likely to "have a large impact on teaching, learning, or creative inquiry" within the next year, the authors of the 2010 Horizon Report tell us.

The latest annual report, the seventh in an ongoing series, provides an updated snapshot of tech tools that are "likely to have a large impact on teaching, learning, or creative inquiry on college and university campuses within the next five years." Those reports always have an impact far beyond reaching their primary audience, and help those of us involved in e-Learning have a better grasp of where we and our learners are going.

In addition to describing the rapidly evolving impact of mobile computing - "smart phones, netbooks, laptops, and a wide range of other devices [providing] access [to] the Internet using cellular-based portable hotspots and mobile broadband cards" - and open content as "a cost-effective alternative to textbooks and others materials," the report looks out over a five year period for documented trends.

Electronic books and simple augmented reality appear on the horizon within the next two or three years, and gesture-based computing and visual data analysis (pdf) appear ready for widespread use within four or five years, the Horizon Report authors say.

This only an extract of the original. The whole article belongs to Paul Signorelli and can be found here.(Subscription required.)

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The world is talking. Are you Listening?

Global Voices = Global Learning

There are many interesting things coming in Global Voices (GV) and certainly we found useful to share with you the short but very explicative post of Michelle Pacansky-Brock, who has been kindly enough to write about the link between Global Voices contents and global education.

Global Voices is a global resource for 21st century educators, most definitely. Every single one of us should find an activity that leverages this resource and weave it into our students' learning. Wow.

Click away to find out why the global voices shared in GV, "are not mainstream voices."

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Is Google/Internet Making Us Stupid?

Last year, pundit Nicholas Carr made the case saying Google was making us stupid. And that happened about a year. Since then, other authors had pitched in to take the discussion to higher levels. The Cult of the Amateur: How Today's Internet is Killing our Culture by Andrew Keen, e.g., shows how communications revolutions disrupt old behavior. In book The Dumbest Generation, English Professor Mark Bauerlein writes that Internet "stupefies young Americans and jeopardizes our future." Canadian James Harkin argues that we’ve all ended up Lost in Cyburbia, "a peculiar no man’s land, populated by people who don’t really know each other, gossiping, having illicit encounters and endlessly twitching their curtains."

But wait to hear Jaron Lanier, in his new book You Are Not a Gadget: A Manifesto, he argues that our cybermania is turning us into autobots programmed with a love of totalitarianism.

All this discussion comes after Carr, in his article, argued that the ease of online searching and distractions of browsing through the web were possibly limiting his capacity to concentrate. Remember though, that cited authors grew up in a different year than the Gen X. You probably saw a kid performing different activities at the same time and you are not able to understand how he manages to do that. This is happening in most families without parent realizing it. How do they get going with cell phone, iPod, TV, laptop and homework, all at the same time?

I would like to agree with Lanier and Carr but until I see definite research, I will resist to think that multitasking is making us - or our children, stupid. Until now what we have is the expert opinion and surveys.

This approach takes me to the old dilemma: what was first the egg or the hen. Google and the Internet are the medium and both can make us stupid and intelligent at the same time. I support what Marcel Bullinga, a Dutch Futurist at believes: In the future, we will live in a transparent 3D mobile media cloud that surrounds us everywhere. In this cloud, we will use intelligent machines, to whom we delegate both simple and complex tasks. Therefore, we will lose the skills we needed in the old days (e.g., reading paper maps while driving a car). But we will gain the skill to make better choices (e.g., knowing to choose the mortgage that is best for you instead of best for the bank). All in all, I think the gains outweigh the losses."

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