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Thanks for another great class session. There is a lot of work to do to get a participatory class like this off the ground, but it’s exciting to see. We’re getting work done in three dimensions:
  1. We’re developing a shared understanding of the field, by examining its history and some of the contours of present-day learning; 
  2. We’re exploring possibilities for deep investigation by proposing projects; and
  3. We’re building our technical capacity for a shared platform for networked learning by developing our own spaces on the web, with blogs and Twitter 

We’ll continue each week to journey down these three pathways, of shared ideas, projects, and online discourse. It’s more moving pieces that a typical course, but I have every confidence that you will make it worth the investment.

In reflecting on our last class, I hope you’ll take a moment to see how Audrey Watters posted notes from our conversation at her Hack Education blog: Audrey provides a great example about how a learning experience based in a residential classroom can be a contribution to a broader learning network. She took her talk notes and slides and wove them together into an extended blog post. She also took our tweets from the session, which represented some of your questions and highlighted thoughts, and organized them in a Storify page. The storify has been viewed over 600 times in 18 hours, and link to the blog post has been retweeted 50+ times. What could have been an experience solely limited to the fifty of us in the room, has been made accessible for hundreds or thousands more.

I find this kind of shared educational production quite moving.

To Prepare for Next Week

By the end of today (Friday), you should have either filled our the partner survey or completed proposing an independent project or conducting a partner project. I’m hoping that by Monday I can give you all feedback on the process. It’s been incredibly excited to discuss your interests and read about your ideas.

As always, take a few minutes to check the t509massive hashtag, and this week definitely visit the Blog Hub, which has about 10 blogs from class syndicated so far. Some great initial thoughts and reflections from your classmates! (Also, consider signing up to bring snacks.)
Class on Wednesday will be in the lecture hall from 4-6pm. Then from 6-7:30, we’ll run a series of optional sessions to help support your project work. More details on this as we learn more about your projects. We’re trying to develop learning opportunities to support you in real time.

***I’ve changed the syllabus slightly for next week****

  • I added as a requirement for class Wednesday that you complete the Blog Challenges as best you can. Please try to have submitted your blog URL for syndication by Wednesday. If you need help, we’ll run some social media extra help clinics before and after class on Wednesday. Come by G-08 at 3pm, or stay later.
  • I added one Rabbit Hole reading: the Connected Learning Report from the Connected Learning Alliance. If you are a K-12 or informal ed person, I recommend it very highly.
  • I moved the DS106 Daily Create assignment from Required to Rabbit Hole. But they are fun. 
  • I moved the Participation Proposal and Rubric to be due Friday, instead of Wednesday. But start it before class. Describe how you want to contribute to our online learning network. Describe how you would like to evaluate your contributions. What would awesome look like?

Tweet or email if you need help getting it all sorted out. We’re building a strong foundation for the rest of the semester!

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Here’s everything you need to know to apply for a project–Due Friday 9/12:

Independent Project

Complete the Independent Project Proposal. (Carli has a great example here.)

A great way to submit is to post online, and email or tweet me (@bjfr) the link.

You an also complete the document and email it to me, if you don’t want to post online.

We will try to get you feedback ASAP.

Partner Project

First, make sure that you have a resume/c.v. online, either as a document uploaded to your blog, on an About Page on your site, or as a public Google Doc.

Then, complete the survey at the link here. (LIVE AT 7pm)

The survey will ask for your name and a link to your CV.

Then you can select up to three choices for  projects. For each, you can write a statement about your interests and, if relevant, qualifications.

Ideally, everyone will distribute themselves perfectly and be able to do whatever they want. If some options are oversubscribed, then mentors can help select candidates based on qualifications.

My hope is that by Monday, everyone will have either been assigned to a partner project or gotten feedback on an individual project.


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Thank you everyone for a terrific first class. I’m very excited to be learning together this semester. A few odds and ends to wrap up the week and get ready for the next.

Project Matching

To clarify a process question that has come up. If you want to submit an independent project, you’ll need to submit an initial proposal by 9/12. If you want to apply to a partner project, you will do so via a survey that will be released on Wednesday 9/10 after class. There is no need, at this point, to contact the project mentors directly. We are waiting to release the survey until after we describe the projects in class. Definitely be thinking about what you are hoping to do, but you won’t need to take action until after Wednesday.

Materials from Last Week

Everything that I or we created together is now shared on the syllabus, in the first week under Class Sessions. Some documents (like our list of twitter resources) is only shared in the Harvard domain. Request to share if you can’t access.

If you created anything that would be of use to your fellow learners that you would like added to the syllabus– class notes, reading notes, later reflections– link to it in a syllabus comment and I’ll add it. I’d love to link out to your resources from the syllabus.

Office Hours

I’ll get to class early next week, maybe as early as 3pm for my pre-class nervous pacing around the room. Please join me. And again, I’ll stay after class as late as need be to chat with folks, especially about project ideas.

John Hansen will have office hours–tentatively in Longfellow 324–on Thursday at 1:30-2:30pm.

TF’s will post more office hours soon as we all sort out our schedules.

Preparation for Next Week

Next week we’ll look at the history of EdTech from two perspectives– the history of distance education and the history of teaching machines. Just a reminder that I encourage you to read either one of the Rabbit Hole readings from Audrey Watters or some of her recent posts on Her last post Beyond the LMS, addresses a number of the issues that Jim Groom raises in our later readings.

I was struck in re-reading the readings for this week how I managed to choose some quite celebratory and some quite disillusioned texts for next week. So stake out your own claim, or come deeply conflicted.

We’ll also discuss and practice starting blogs, or dusting off old blogs to be used for this course, and connecting them to our syndication engine.

Also, please bring and use your name cards. Super geeky, but I really want to learn your names more quickly, and this will help me.

Network Participation

Be sure to check out The Flow tab on this site or the #T509massive hashtag as the days go by to see what folks are sharing and thinking about. And I’d encourage you to follow each other to see what else people are learning and thinking about in the rest of their lives. As you create things to prepare for next week or reflect on this week, please share. There are rumors of a twitter chat, and live discussion of readings, on Tuesday night.

Final Thoughts

A story:

The first class I attended my freshman year of college was about Rhetoric. I thought I’d be really interested in it, and the first class left me confused, unsure and bewildered. What was this new field? What were some of these words the professor was using? What was all this about? I approached the professor at the end of class with my concerns and he said, “Perfect. If you knew all about this, you wouldn’t need to take this class. Uncertain is a great place to start.”

I’m really excited to be working with all of you, doubly so if you are feeling a little uncertain. Please reach out to me if there is anything I can do.


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Be sure to explore and learn how the site works.  This site syndicates blogs, twitter, instagram, diigo, and flickr to bring all the t509massive content to one place.