I was quite excited to hear Howard Rheingold. He took the stage wearing a colourful shirt (colours being his visual trademark and passion).
Live blognotes from the keynote given by Howard Rheingold
Before technology => pedagogy. Without the best pedagogy, the technologies would not be so interesting.
Concepts of importance according to Howard (and agreeing)
Learner-centred: multiple learning is now possible, if you have access to media, and you know what you are doing as a learner.
Inquiry based learning is of interest, knowing how to ask the questions in a world where so many things change so rapidly.
Collaborative learning: more learners collaborate on projects, as well as cooperative learning. Being responsible for each other’s learning. Being aware of what other’s interest and expertise is. So that the group of learners can be bigger than the sum of the individual learners.
Networked learning: learners can connect to each other across locations, regions, groups…
Howard’s passion was/is based on virtual communities. He started virtual communities decades ago, and got more experience on this topic based on trial and error, use and experience, explicitly enabling the learner group to have a voice.
The idea is to create a conversation that is bigger due to collaboration/corporation/co-working.
It started as learners amplifying their individual voice by using blogs, commenting on discussion forum… the sense of agency, the ability to create your own networks is enabled by the web, and social media in particular.
Co-teaching: the learners teach everyone, including the teacher. Where the first meeting is face-to-face, the dialogue is kept going online.
The real change in mindset happened when he introduced the concept of co-learning. So the shift really went from the teacher lecturing, to the learners teaching themselves. It is increasingly collaborative.
What do self-learners need to know in order to effectively teach and learn from each other? (he does make explicit that only a few kept the conversation going) => peeragogy (free handbook, open to suggestions from all of us). Peeragogy.org
There is a place for teachers, but we cannot scale up the training of teachers. And do people want to pay more taxes to pay teachers => social-political issues.
More people than ever before have access to learning (remark from me: yes, but… it is not because you learn, you are able to see what type of learning will help you forward in life, or will increase critical thinking. Wisdom does have a tendency to come with age).
The web is not just corporate platforms to interact. It would not be there unless students, individuals construct information (remark from myself: yes, but are these self-made content pages taken up by search engines?)
Media should be mixed based on its usefulness.
Procedural knowledge is increasingly freely available, but understanding how all of these fit together in order to attain more knowledge needs to be researched. As such an expert facilitator helps, but more and more people connect together.