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You Are the Theory, You Are the Technology in-Action: The CoLab

You Are the Theory, You Are the Technology in-Action: The CoLab

Written by Ralph Cordova
January 05, 2012

Grounded in the National Writing Project’s teachers teaching teachers model, the CoLab is a community of diverse and accomplished K – University practicing teacher-researchers conceptualizing our classrooms, schools, districts and learning settings as cultural landscapes for learning. We originate as the Piasa Bluffs Writing Project at SIUE, and are a growing community of NWP sites confabulating, remixing, and, learning from the ways we mash up against each other. That’s how we learn to value our cultural practices, and, take on those (that we like) of others. In doing so, we learn to see learning by bringing these landscapes side by side, learning by letting them talk to one another. 

The CoLab’s ResponsiveDesign™ approach centered on a prototyping mindset catalyzes creativity by exploring, envisioning and enacting bold and innovative solutions to everyday educational problems. 

The CoLab draws on an interactional ethnographic perspective that harnesses complementary theories from anthropology, critical discourse analysis, and literary theory. For us, developing empathy for the communities we work with helps us build capacity as human-centered problem solvers. Our success is evidenced in recent work with school districts (18 schools across three districts with over 500 teachers), museum settings, and yearly Invitational Summer Institutes.

Let’s get it started at the Annual Meeting in Chicago!


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