Your unguided tour of Rhizo14

For some of you (like those who started the course a week early) rhizo14 will simply be an extension of your normal practice on the internet. You’ll find familiar faces who make references to previous learning events online, you already have web places from which you speak, and many of you are already familiar with the material. For other folks this will be a new journey, you’ll be the only person you know in the course and you’ll be, frankly, lost. Most will fall somewhere in between those two places, and you will turn to me for guidance thinking things like

“This is the biggest waste of time ever”
“I don’t know what I’m supposed to do”
“That dave guy has no idea what he’s doing”
and, inevitably…
“What’s the definition of rhizomatic learning?”

First and foremost
Let’s get something straight right out of the get go… it is true that I mostly don’t know what I’m doing. I’ve been experimenting with online community style learning (which I have, for reasons that might become apparent, called rhizomatic learning) for about 10 years now. This course is my latest experiment with it. You are all joining in with me, in various ways for various reasons, along a journey that will have different results for different people. I have already learned new things and the course hasn’t even started. I’m looking for new ways to explain the things I have come to believe about learning, the nagging sense of what might be true that I just can’t put into words. I am a nomad, not a knower. I’ll do what i can to help or answer, but this is not a situation where i know things that others don’t. I’m hosting a party, not trying to tell you what or how to think.

Orientation information – read this first
There are a number of ‘locations’ that you can use to follow along with what’s going on during the course. You might choose to pick one and stick with it or use several. You are also most welcome to create your own space if you have specific needs or are particularly fussy :). The most important part of your choice is figuring out what is going to fit into your life better. The more you figure out what you’re taking this course for, where you will be when you check in to see what people are doing – the better chance of you having a fruitful experience.

p2pu
The course is being ‘held’ at P2PU (Peer to Peer University). You can go there and ask questions, find dates for live sessions, and participate in discussion with a wide range of people. This site will probably have the most formal experience of any in the course and will also be a location where you are likely to find lots of people you don’t know. Some comments will also get lost on p2pu. We are nearing 300 people in the course and if we even get half of those people engaged, it’s going to be tough. If you see something uncommented/replied/shared engage with it. You don’t need to agree with it, just add value to it.


Here’s a few tips on using the discussion forums.

Facebook
Facebook is what it is. There are some things it does well, mostly because lots of people are there. We have a facebook group. I’ve set things up so that all my blog posts and tweets automagically post there. If you aren’t sure where to start, and you currently use Facebook, this is a nice way to start. Same rules here, share, engage and add value when you comment.

Rhizo14 Facebook Group Link

Twitter
This is my weapon of choice. Following the #rhizo14 hashtag is a pretty good way of checking this out. You can follow along with my discussions with folks and that will probably give you some material to work with. Ideally, of course, as things progress you’ll form your own connections (or more connections)

Google +
There’s a google + community out there for rhizomatic learning. You are free to join it and work through there. Google+ is not a place i ever came to love, but some people do. Each to their own.

Blogs
You can follow this blog and start discussions in the comments here. There are other folks out there that are blogging as well. These are excellent places to meet people. If you have your own blog, it is MUCH easier for you to have other people talk to you.

Other stuff?
If all else fails, search google. If you create or have found other spaces, let me know and I’ll edit the post.

Course objectives
Just kidding. There aren’t any. You can have personal objectives. You can have group objectives. But I’m not creating objectives for anyone. :)

What you can expect from a given week
In a given week I will host a discussion day on Tuesday. I will write at least one blog post. I will do my very best to tweet and comment as much as humanly possible. I will try and craft some kind of scaffolding for the next week. I will rake in all the cash from this incredibly profitable event.

What you should do in a given week?
Try to forget everything you know about ‘traditional education’ and imagine that you are going to camp for 6 weeks. The first thing i would do is find out where the food is. But that’s me. You might like to just chat with people. You might want to create a map of the premises to make sure you were never lost. You might try to make one really good friend. You’ll notice that some of the people in camp already know each other, you’ll see an eager person in the corner that no one is talking to.

You might have gone to camp to challenge yourself or to just kinda hang out a little. These things are up to you. There are no straight lines and no clear answers coming from me. I’ve been scratching my head about rhizomatic learning for 7-8 years because i think the story is important. These six weeks are me inviting you to scratch your head along with me :)

See Terry Elliot’s excellent work so far for some additional context. This comment and this post.

Don’t know where to start. Write something somewhere and tell us why you joined. Send us the link, somehow. We’ll care.

Welcome aboard.

32 thoughts on “Your unguided tour of Rhizo14

  1. “I’m hosting a party.” and “imagine that you are going to camp” had me thinking this might be fun until I read “I will rake in all the cash” and “scratch your head along with me”

    “That Dave guy” may say he doesn’t know what he’s doing, but he articulates it as well and engagingly as anyone I know. That’s why I joined. Whatever it is he’s doing, I hope he keeps doing it.

  2. I would have expected a presence of #rhizo14 on Rizzoma.com , a recent reincarnation of the Wave protocol – http://rizzoma.com .

    Rizzoma is also an allusion on the concept of rhizoma and the multifaceted partition of knowledge throughout the world.

    Pieter Jansegers
    twitter.com/jansegers

  3. The ability (and inclination) of the host to let participants determine how the party will unfold will benefit, and just as likely, surprise all involved. I’m looking forward to seeing how the camp/party transpires over the next six weeks :-)

  4. The alearbility (and inclination) of the host to let participants determine how the party will unfold will benefit, and just as likely, surprise all involved. I’m looking forward to seeing how the camp/party transpires over the next six weeks :-)

  5. This post made me laugh and resonates so thoroughly with what we are hoping to explore in MultiMOOC that I incorporated snippets of it into the session description. There is a link to that description in my Scoop of this post here: http://sco.lt/6sFcSP

    MultiMOOC is not a MOOC; it’s an EVO session whose intent is to learn more about MOOCs, by tagging onto a real MOOC; i.e. this one. I think we’ll enjoy the ride :-)

  6. I’d say I was getting my bearings but that would be misleading — and utterly irrelevant. For some reason, spelunking and orienteering come to mind — but with going off course and getting lost as the goal. Looking forward to it all.

  7. Already thoroughly overcommitted to other things, but this post has sucked me in. One of the best course intros I’ve seen! Love the idea of a party, and I think you’ve teased out some important elements of learning on the social web: the importance of engaging with others, adding value by commenting, open content and multiple access points, leaving course objectives up to participants – making learning self directed while providing support and encouraging people to support each other.

  8. Since the first day of camp was always terrifying, I suppose it’s no surprise that I’m still tiptoeing around this course!

    Although I briefly lost my brain and with it the first live session time, I’m looking forward to watching as much as I can on youtube and following up on some of the commenting that has already been going on. I’m also interested to see if my new-found passion for concept maps will find a place in this rhizomatic adventure.

    Looking forward to the journey!

  9. It’s a pleasure becoming student in school that could research causes of mistakes and could amend and rehabilitates, last time i did partake a project about ‘TWITTER API’ but i still have course about ‘RHIZOMATIC’ in mind, Thanks for teaching us more about Rhizomatic,

  10. I came to the party/camp as a jaded and recovering academic looking for inspirations to continue my journey of lifelong learning. My enthusiasm turned to reticence to lurking and now … to excitement. Loving the nomadic life online, as I have in life. “Travel is fatal to prejudice and bigotry” m twain; and I am back on the road to “learn, unlearn and relearn” A. Toffler. Thanks so much Dave and fellow nomads … I am getting back in to the “flow”.

  11. I am putting off my review for my M.A. comprehensive exam, for this.

    Should be studying about Learner-Centered Learning..

    But I am being drawn into this…

    The challenge for me now is to link the two so I can hit two birds at the same time.

  12. Hi
    This is just so great Dave, I jsut love the approach , going on a camp, and that you are hosting a party. This is really what Rhizome is about. I ma so happy that I signded in, it is the niceest approach ever for be motivated in learning and its processes.
    By the way my blog is e4quality innvationandlearning , and I had an intention already at start to write on rhizomes,. thttp://e4qualityinnovationandlearning.blogspot.se/

    This is also an approach I am argeud for in my dissertation Benchmarking elearning in higher education. Lessons learned from international projects
    So rhizome learning is really my piece of teh cake
    http://jultika.oulu.fi/Record/isbn978-952-62-0041-5

  13. Well, better late than never! Here I am just today reading your intro and associated comments. At first I thought, you’re too late to jump in, but the thing is, there’s no such thing in the rhizomatic realm, so I’m only a slightly late blooming rhizome in the big mix…been thinking about how this exercise/experience relates to the dilemmas of the Square in Flatland: challenged in the very certainty of his apparent reality, to the point of being ejected from 2 to 3 dimensional it’s by the Sphere. Maybe the Rhizome is to the Sphere what the Sphere is to the Square….my 2 cents for this eve

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