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It’s difficult to predict which skills will be valuable in the future, and even more challenging to see the connection between our children’s interests and these skills. Nothing illustrates this better than Minecraft, a popular game that might be best described as virtual LEGOs. Calling it a game belies the transformation it has sparked: An entire generation is learning how to create 3D models using a computer. Now, I wonder, what sort of businesses, communication, entertainment or art will be possible?
Khan Academy is changing the way we learn. Their latest experiment, LearnStorm, is piloting in the Bay Area with support from Google.org. Watch as Sal and Eric discuss LearnStorm, Khan Academy and the future of education. (Published on Feb 19, 2015)
HOST: Alexander Heffner
GUEST: John Palfrey
AIR DATE: 06/21/14
I’m Alexander Heffner, your new host on The Open Mind.
For more than a half-century, my grandfather explored the universe of ideas from this chair, and I was fortunate to benefit from his tutelage.
In taking his seat as he hoped I would, I’ll carry on Open Mind’s mission as he conceived it: “To elicit meaningful insights into the challenges Americans face in contemporary areas of national concern…a quiet and thoughtful excursion into the world of ideas.”
Paying attention to issues such as immigration, climate change, and the nature of our digital society, Open Mind’s commitment to non-adversarial conversation in the public interest continues here today…as I welcome my first guest.
There is no more perceptive analyst of technology and “Digital Natives,” those who came of age during the Internet revolution, than John Palfrey: Chairman of the Digital Public Library of America and Head of School at Phillips Academy, Andover, where he leads a seminar on “Hacking: A Course in Experiments.”
The former Henry Ess Professor and Vice Dean at Harvard Law School, Palfrey was Executive Director from 2002 to 2008 of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, where he co-authored the critically acclaimed bookBorn Digital.
I know John Palfrey to be a most inspiring champion of open access, digital literacy, and youth empowerment – both in his stewardship of the Digital Public Library and as a mentor to many Harvard and Andover students. While eternally optimistic that the digital world is a glass half-full – not half-empty – Palfrey is sensitive to the human values, ethical, and legal considerations of a pre-Google world that sometimes appear in conflict with the tactics of WikiLeaks or Edward Snowden.
In a February lecture in Akron, Ohio, Palfrey compellingly explored the uses and misuses of technology, the digital divide between naïve and sophisticated Web-users, and the Digital Public Library’s role in bringing knowledge to more communities – topics we’ll explore in a moment.
But first I want to ask John Palfrey how he sees this generation of Digital Natives to be evolving, if there remains a tension between “open access” and “privacy”, and if, perhaps, a second generation of Digital Natives has already arisen without these clashing interests.
A quick update: Last year, we told you about Corey Olsen, an English Professor at Washington College, who started publishing online lectures on the writing of J.R.R. Tolkien. We initially featured his lecture series on The Hobbit. Now “The Tolkien Professor,” as Olsen is otherwise known, presents a series of online courses on The Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Read the full post and get the links @ OpenCulture.com.
A summer course at the University of New Hampshire that uses the Harry Potter series to teach young students grammar and reading skills has prompted a cease and desist order from Warner Brothers, local CNN station WMUR reports.
While educational use of copyrighted works is legally allowed, Warner Brothers “doesn’t want people to think it sponsored the class,” according to WMUR. In the past, the course has been titled “Harry Potter as Storytelling” and is targeted at students from fourth to eighth grade.
Over on Core77, Rain Noe discusses a sweeping international study by a team of Stanford and University of Munich researchers, who looked at all sorts of questions about how economics, school conditions, and parents end up affecting education. But one of the most interesting tidbits concerned the fact that a child’s achievements at school are correlated to whether his or her parents own a very simple object.
That object? A bookshelf. Two, actually. According to the study’s authors, the educational achievements of British children whose parents owned two bookcases differed from children whose parents didn’t by 1.15 standard deviations. In plain language, that’s three times the amount of what the average kid learns during a year of school.
Read the full article @ Gizmodo.com.
Published on Mar 20, 2013
The rate of change in the world demands that we re-imagine and restructure the foundational learning relationship among students, teachers, and knowledge. In September 2012, pursuing a decades-long passion for transformational education, Grant packed up his Prius and set off on a solo, nationwide research tour to discover what schools are doing to prepare students for an evolving future. Find out what he learned from three months on the road visiting 21 states, 64 schools, and the great ideas of 500 educators. Presented by Grant Lichtman, Author and Educational Consultant.
A recent dust-up between Wikipedia and Canada’s largest university raises questions about how collaborative the popular website that bills itself as “the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit” truly is.
The online information portal recently took a professor from the University of Toronto to task for one of his classroom assignments.
Steve Joordens urged the 1,900 students in his introductory psychology class to start adding content to relevant Wikipedia pages. The assignment was voluntary, and Joordens hoped the process would both enhance Wikipedia’s body of work on psychology while teaching students about the scientist’s responsibility to share knowledge.
But Joordens’s plan backfired when the relatively small contingent of volunteer editors that curate the website’s content began sounding alarm bells. They raised concerns about the sheer number of contributions pouring in from people who were not necessarily well-versed in the topic or adept at citing their research.
Read the full article @ CTVNews.ca.
Arizona Phoenix College math instructor James Sousa has been teaching math for 15 years at both the community college and K-12 levels. Over the years, he has developed more than 2,600 video tutorials on topics from arithmetic to calculus, and made these videos available on YouTube, originally under a CC BY-NC-SA license. His website and videos, entitled, Mathispower4u, feature both math lessons and examples, and many of the videos have been incorporated into online homework questions available at MyOpenMath.com.
Read the full article @ CreativeCommons.org.
Onstage at TED2013, Sugata Mitra makes his bold TED Prize wish: Help me design the School in the Cloud, a learning lab in India, where children can explore and learn from each other — using resources and mentoring from the cloud. Hear his inspiring vision for Self Organized Learning Environments (SOLE), and learn more at tedprize.org.
Educational researcher Sugata Mitra is the winner of the 2013 TED Prize. His wish: Build a School in the Cloud, where children can explore and learn from one another.