I had been writing about diving into the world of Twitter Bots for Networked Narratives, and my interest in creating my own Twitter Bot, if only to understand the process of how it is done. Well, I did it. Check out the PeaceLove&Bot bot. Every six hours, the PeaceLove bot will send out a new tweet that begins with the lines made famous in the Elvis Costello song (but written by Nick Lowe) with random word replacing "Understanding" in the lyrics. I've included the #NetNarr hashtag in the code, too, so that the tweets get sent into the NetNarr twitter stream. Phew.
From the Community
This past summer I attended our local chapter of the National Writing Project, Red Cedar Writing Project, leadership meeting. During the meeting, we were given the opportunity to join projects that were either in progress or just starting up. I found myself intrigued by the description of both YouthVoices.live and LRNG.org. I decided that these two projects sounded interesting and fulfilled my need to combine learning with technology.
Little did I know what an awesome team I would join. There are seven of us, and our leader has taken to calling us the Magnificent Seven (but without all the violence, of course). I have to admit that never in my wildest dreams did I expect this team to be as productive and driven as it has proven to be. So what has it been like for me?
Langston Hughes said it best when he expressed his feelings in the masterpiece, “I, too”:
I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,”
They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed—
I, too, am America.
Sometimes innovation is about having a sense of the big idea, then paving the way one step at a time. Creativity and exploration certainly is part of the learning process.
As an engaged digital literacy educator, I invite my students into powerful opportunities to engage in conversation with other learners across the country through the Youth Voices Community. Through this professional learning space, several dedicated teachers, including National Writing Project teachers, engage students in conversation through written discussion and video conferences, as well as support with guides for writing and learning with shared curriculum.
While I think the goal of providing equitable access to educational technology is laudable, I am consistently amazed at the lack of foresight demonstrated by districts when it comes to what teachers and students should do with the devices once they have been distributed. As I have ranted before, the devices do not magically transform learning — strong pedagogy does that. And, I do not see much evidence of sustained, meaningful professional development being offered to teachers so that they can create strong, technology-enriched pedagogy.
This post was written by all the teacher-leaders in Sandboxes for Learning who attended the meeting described below December 9-11, 2016: Paul Allison, Christina Cantrill, Joe Dillion, Jenny Lockie, Jo Paraiso, Dawn Reed, Shantanu Saha, Chris Sloan, and Trixie Smith.
A profile on the evolution of educator innovator, Joe Dillon, 11th grade English teacher and instructional coach at Rangeview High School in Aurora, Colorado.
For the CLMOOC Pop-Up Make Cycle for #DigiWriMo, we invited people to help annotate an interview of Troy Hicks about digital literacies. The Edutopia article by Todd Finley is a few years old, but holds up remarkably well, I think. We have been using the Hypothesis annotation tool, which allows you to collaboratively add comments and media in the margins of a web-based article. It's a great way to "think out loud with others" in the margins of the Web. It's also invisible, to some degree.
I don't claim to understand all of the data analysis that goes on when people research and examine all of the elements of our social interactions in places like Twitter and beyond. Here, for example, is what the Innovator's Mindset MOOC looked like from a data analysis viewpoint.