Trading in Torture – Where will citizenship education lead?

I’m kicking back on the couch with Bonnie and the cat, trying to get some of the ideas that have been flooding through my head over the last couple of days into print. I don’t know if its the springtime, or a return to a slightly more normal life that does it, but i seem to be settling into posting a little more often and potentially getting a few different ideas posted.

I came across a fantastic article in the guardian today. It’s the kind of article that makes you stop, read the title again, read through it, cheer, shudder and then wonder what its all about. For those of you too… um… busy to read the link, a quick recap. (although the article is well worth the read) Group of students in England form two companies. One in England and one in Ireland. Through this company they are able to import ‘weapons of torture’ into the country. They also get some ‘price quotes’ on things like a grenade launcher. They bring a ‘sting stick’ to some guy named Malcolm Wicks, who’s the head of some department called – import controls.

So, first reaction, George Lear, the head of ‘citizenship’ at Lord William’s school is my new hero. Now that! That was a PLAN! We’ll get the students (assuming it was his idea, which i’m in no way sure of) to set up a company that will try to import dangerous items in order to both prove its possible, as well as convince the student’s that anything is possible. That they can be involved in the politics of their country… that they can even have an effect on policy. Fantastic.

The second reaction… well. Holy crap. People can really do this. And kids can do it. Annaarrcchist ccookbook eat your heart out. That’s all we could ascribe to as kids (not that i’ve ever had one, google, i know you’re watching) But now the list is endless, and a group of students form the UK can import whatever they want. OMFG.

My third reaction was the one that really hit home. I’ve seen great projects before (although maybe never one quite this grand) and i already actually knew that this kind of stuff was happening on the internet. No. My third reaction was, what is the ‘minister of control’ going to do about it? He gets cornered by a bunch of kids who give him a stun gun, and, according to the article, there’s going to be a full extravaganza on BBC on Monday

What is the reaction that we get everytime that a new part of the internet gets bad publicity? Shut it down! What about the children! The sky is falling! and a rise in the price of oil. Never quite figured out how the last part happens, but it always seems to.

I am now getting officially worried about the policing of the internet. I remember a series of posts at the turn of the new year (links absent, too lazy) that talked about the big cable/phone companies regulating traffic and charging for movement on the internet. I can but imagine that some control of traffic will naturally come along with that. At the risk of receiving a tin-foil hat in my inbox tomorrow deals are usually made when two people have something they want to trade. The government is going to want to control this access. The companies are definetely going to want to make as much money as they can from the internet.

Sounds like a deal to me.

So what can we do? Same as ever. Educate. Chase away bad air with bright metal. Fight the power.

What we can do is realize that the arguments we all make about access to computers, About freedom being about responsibility, that one needs to come with the other, and this being one of the greatest things that blogging will teach our students. About how collaboration dispels fears. How trying to shut down the system has only ever sent somewhere else, somewhere less controllable. These arguments are important. And even if some of you get tired of saying it over and over again. That audience is still out there that needs to hear it.
I think the fine work you are all doing is important. Please. Keep it up.

Middle Adopters – Seeing ‘the second wave’ as an audience.

Fingers full of paint flipping over a keyboard propped on my lap, on an evening following a day that actually smelled like spring. Spring that brings all the little jobs that need to get done, Spring that brings the leaves out of the trees we planted last year (hopefully). It’s our first spring in our first house. A very, very special time. And a time for my computer muscled body to remember that those muscles are actually made for doing something other than typing…

Had a great chat with Bud Hunt tonight, just before i put brush and roller to my stairs.  He was asking me, quite rightly i think, what it was exactly we were trying to do at the barnraising. He pointed out that Tadge O’brien, over at Monroe, has a fantastic resource in his edtech wiki. During the shows many other fine pieces of work have been mentioned, most of which are detailed in the barnraising modules. Why then, if we knew these things existed, were we trying to do it all over again? (I must interject here, and say that Bud put all of this in a far better way, and i hope he forgives the crude way I’m abusing his fine conversation to work towards my point)

Let me start with some premises for background.

  1. The Read/Write education is in its infancy.
  2. Those who were there at the birth, are, by necessity, defining the conversation.
  3. They are also defining the terms of the conversation.
  4. They are empowered by this position of… er… power.
  5. This empowerment, to some degree, separates them from the ‘second wave’.
  6. The second wave of people are the ones who ‘learn’ the language. (different from the ones who created it)
  7. When one is ‘learning’ something, one vaguely expects those things that one is learning to ‘work’. As opposed to someone who is ‘creating’ something, who is a little more prepared to ‘test’ something.
  8. These waves overlap, and some people have their feet in both pools, in different circumstances.
  9. People who quibble over details the first time I expound a theory are not very nice, and should be more patient.
  10. That overlap, EVENTUALLY, solidifies, and the item, like the telephone, becomes a standard of everyones practice.

And now premises for creation of learning ‘items’.

  1. Audience, in everything, is critical.

I remember the first time I started to program in CSS. I was in the second wave, we were already at CSS2, and there were already very serious experts at it.(those guys still blow my mind, anyone who says webdesign isn’t art…) I was going around, pulling down pieces of stuff from different sites, looking at the code, pasting some of it into my own little test site to see how it would work. I was coming into what was a mature environment (for the internet) and as I would appear very uncool asking simple questions like, “waddaya mean cascading…?” or “How do i make my page center?” i just lurked around until i could find bits to start with.

When I take a look at the three or four sites that taught me the admitedly elementary webdesign that i do know, a couple stand out. The listematic, a fantastic show by example site supported by the grand master of css, w3schools, and glish, the layout site. With these three websites, I learned enough to design and sell a website or two over the years. Take a look at them. They all share one very important quality. They show you EXACTLY what you would need to do, in a basic way, to be successful.

As a ‘second wave’ learner to css, that’s exactly what i needed. A way I could succeed automatically, without fear, without the chance of failure (beyond my little bouts of inattention. Second wavers want to be able to see where they’re going to get without asking alot of questions that they know the first wavers have heard a zillion times. They want to show up, copy and paste, and then make it happen in their own lives.

This is what i would like to see happen for new media education. I would like to see a copy and paste solution for a classroom wiki project. A copy and paste solution for blogging with your students. These things, these copy and paste solutions are the markers of a mature medium. Once things can be easily copied, they are really part of the mainstream. And for my part I want the read/write web to be part of the mainstream. I want students to be producers of knowledge. I want them to be able to control the media that is trying to control them.

All that to say. The second wave is the audience many of us are seeking. We need to produce for them, not for us… until we all blend into the same, and those separations wont matter anymore, and blogging will really be the same as calling someone on the telephone.

Wikipedia not as accurate as Britannica… bad Nature.

The debate about whether digital universe is better than wikipedia is better than britannica is better than my mom?

Irrelevant. There are no gatekeepers protecting knowledge. Or at least, the gatekeepers are very difficult to find and/or they can’t do their jobs very well anymore. What we have now are salespeople, they are selling particular brands of knowledge and we need to teach our students to be good consumers.

I was sent this little article this morning with one of those open mouthed smilies… It seems, at least according to The Register, which has been trashing wikipedia for months and months, that Nature did bad things with its data… That its research was bogus. Brittannica wrote a response to the Nature article that condemns their research practices and suggests things like – Nature sent parts of articles – Nature sent the childrens version.

Damning information for Nature. If they did it, they deserve a kick in the head. They’ve got one of those names you don’t like to be able to refute, like “my mom told me that”.

Damning for wikipedia? No. Not at all. It proves the point we’ve been making all along. Truth is a matter of perspective. Even the best research can be cooked (assuming Nature did that, which I’m not, I haven’t the foggiest idea if they have or not) and biases enter into every discussion.

The quest for ‘Truth’ in its capital T sense, is one best left for comparitive religion classes. What we need to teach students today is how to assess the ‘truths’ they are being presented with. This makes a perfect example…

  • Look at the register article
  • Look at the ‘related links’ on the bottom
  • Notice that they are all ‘anti-wikipedia’
  • Read the Britannica article
  • Read the Nature article
  • Draw your own conclusions
  • Wikipedia isn’t perfect
  • Britannica isn’t perfect
  • The Register isn’t perfect
  • Nature isn’t perfect

Add them together and you get a picture not only of what the ‘truth’ might be, but also of how biases affect knowledge, of how the corporate and tradition affect the way people see certain issues, and you do some solid research along the way. This is what our students need to learn how to do.

WIKIS in education – Wikitextbooks and the edtech curriculum project

We’ve been working on a couple of projects over the last couple of weeks. It’s been a wild ride, trying to balance the live work and encourage the asynchronous work… Live wiki building is, well, pretty busy work. There has been some confusion regarding the separation between the two projects… so i figure i’ll write a little review of both, sketch out some lessons learned and talk a little about where, from my own point of view, i’d like to see them go.(All opinions are those of the author alone and are not meant to reprensent the views of educationbridges, or worldbridges inc. 🙂 )

Wikitextbook Project at Educationbridges.

The wikitextbook project, or at least the live construction of it can be seen over at educationbridges. We had two main goals in trying to construct a wiki over there… We wanted to give some of our crew some experience working inside the wiki, and we wanted a working space to test out some of our speculative policy ideas.

We’ve done two shows around that space so far, and while there is not a terribly large amount of ‘content’ in the space, it was not entirely meant to ever house that content. The idea was to play around with some of the essential issues are wikitextbooks;

  1. How will validation be organized in practice?
  2. How will teachers work together in order to create content?
  3. How can content be displayed in ways that avoids the ‘text to screen’ problem?
  4. Who will the audience be and how will we reach them?
  5. What wiki building policies will we need?
  6. What would the template of a ‘good page’ look like?

There are more I suppose, but these are some of the issues that have come up over the course of the two episodes. The most compelling issue for me, and the one upon which i believe i have changed my mind concerns the audience. I went into this process believing that we were going to need to appease the administrators in given locals in order to be able to reach our initial goals of creating a wikitextbook that can be used in areas where the purchase of up-to-date textbooks is financially restrictive. On the last show… my mind was changed by the excellent arguments of the many.

I now believe that a core group of the willing will be needed for a successful wikitextbook project. We need to find three or four schools (cyber or otherwise) that have a willingness to work with us to create the first pilots of a project that will work. Only after success has been proved are we going to be able to convince more traditionally minded administrators that this can be a long term solution. Now, we need the schools and the money… and a clear delineated plan.

Edtech Barnraising – Building a New Media Curriculum.

The edtech barnraising and its accompanying wiki is was, and is, a very different beast. The intention of the barnraising is to get a bunch of different, talented edtechish educators together to create a foundation for new media education. A baseline of basic skills and knowledge available to anyone, to give them an idea of what can be done, and how to go about it.

The audience for the wiki is ‘the teacher on a Saturday night, who wants to teach something on Monday morning’ . There are five basic modules that are in the process of being built by some very smart people, and we hope that everyone will come and contribute to the process.

What have we learned about live wiki-ing in general?

We learned a bunch of stuff.

  1. Many, many people said that they needed voice chat in order to plan, as this would facilitate the interaction, as well as leave the fingers free for content creation.
  2. A system for navigation for the wiki absolutely needs to be worked out before you start.
  3. Allow for pauses in the development for people to catch their breath.
  4. Follow everything else you know that applies to other disciplines, be organized, do a nice introductory exercise, be encouraging, give people clear defined tasks etc…

The fine company I keep.

Good early morning to all of you. 5:39am here on the red dirt isle and I’m finishing my prep for a  5 hour class I’ll be teaching at ten… Crisp here, even in my house, and I’m soaking in that intense quiet of the early morning. An intense quiet disturbed only by the sharp teeth of one little orange kitten who seems to feel that fingers zinging over a laptop are the house’s version of ten blind mice.

I’m reading over an article by one of my favorite educational writers, Frank Smith, and been mulling over the events of the last few days: My somewhat unorthodox presence at the MACUL conference, the rolocking good time we had at the wiki spectacular, and the quite amazing group of people that have signed up for our barnraising on Sunday. And then I came across this line in the 5th Chapter of Smith’s book…

Learning is a social phenomenon. What everyone in every culture has taken for granted for millenia (until experimental psychologists took the study of learning out of the real world and put it in the laboratory) is that learning is a simple consequence of the company you keep. (p. 57)

I’ve learned a great deal since joining this community, and feel quite proud of my membership, excited to work with you all in the ways i get to, and humbled by your willingness to accept my contributions.

I would like to thank you all for being such fine company.

Have a great weekend, and see you on Sunday.

The Best Damn New Media Curriculum evah! – has a new title.

EdTech Barnraising – Building a New Media Curriculum

There’s the title. Others might be considered, or better found, but i like this one. I like the image of a community coming together to build something we all agree needs to be built. All contributing the skills that they have, their more specific knowhow, bringing their bests to a project that supports the entire community. yes, nice image, but what does it mean.

Introduction – what is a barnraising?

This barnraising is the prototype which, if it works, will be the first in an infrequent series of live online working conferences which are dedicated to the creation of pieces of content that are needed for the advancement of bleeding-wave new e-learning 2.0 media educationy stuff (note that i’m not super worried about what peopel call it, i call it new media). Our intention is to create a repository that reflects the views of our community, that being defined as the edublogging community, its friends, and the larger association of educators that know (or will soon) of its existence.

What is this barnraising all about?

This barnraising intends to build a new media curriculum that could be the starting point of, or an asset to, a course or program intended to help teachers blend new media into their classroom.

Who can come to this conference?

You can. By reading this blog, and making it this far into the post you have qualified to come. The things needed are an interest in education, new media and a basic knowledge of the technology. The live audio show will be offering the gravitational pull for this conference. Listening to this is a one click operation. In orbit around the show are the textchat(like MSN messenger), virtual white board and the wiki. If you can find edtechtalk, click on the audio and make it to the chatroom, your in.

What will happen if i go to this ‘barnraising’?

You will work, hopefully. There is room for everyone to take on a job, a responsibility. There is room for the experienced and the inexperienced. You can check out the agenda and follow your way through what we are planning, or contribute your own ideas of how you think it should work. The basic layout however, is this.

first – we will establish a common starting point with a statement of peda/andragogy. This will be boring, but necessary. I must insist on people bringing up their objections to this statement BEFORE the conference. If we start arguing about this during, nothing will get done.

second – choose the ‘modules’ and ‘module team leaders’. Each module team will be responsible for building part of the curriculum. A sample will be provided, but i generally expect, and indeed hope, it will be ignored. It is meant as a starting point. We will also discuss various rules and posting guidelines at this point.

third – the work begins in earnest. People will go to various whiteboard areas in order to begin work with their teams. i expect people to start various skype conferences, text chats etc… and encourage everyone to record their work for the archive. The responsibility for each module being posted to the wiki falls to the leader, but all are welcome to start their own strands as different points of view arise. Two ideas of how to solve a problem would be considered better than one in this project.

fourth – the wandering talk show. We’ll be dropping into various work groups as the conference progresses, getting a sense of what is going on, briding the modules together for crossover work, recruiting help and advice for difficult issues.

fifth – the recap. We’ll try to bring as many people together at the end to get a sense of where were at, where we need to go, and overall, to see if the project worked.

How will we know we’ve succeeded?

Always the most important question. Success will be measured by whether or not we’ve created something that can be built upon.

Server Mayhem, google cache and this blog


well well…

The worldbridges server died. Long live the worldbridges server. We lost everything. No backups. All 125 websites, all the blog posts, content, forum posts, audio… everything. We just had the stuff we had scattered on our computers. I spent that whole of Monday morning mourning all the work we’ve done over the last few years… thinking about the nine years of work for Jeff. And every twenty minutes or so i thought of another person, someone with a course on the server, or with their personal website, a band or whatever, and i felt worse. So much good stuff gone.

One of the most personal losses for me was this blog. I was devastated. The only consistent writing i’ve ever done. The last six months of my practice recorded and lost. All the incoming links everything gone. And then i found the wonder of google cache.

First – back up your system. right now. i’m not kidding. go back it up. you can lose everything too. back it up!

Second – after ignoring my advice and losing (or being close to it, Ewan you know who you are) go to google and put in and click on the little cache buttons underneath the entries.

Third – spend a very long time copy and pasting.

voila – a blog ressurected.

I’m sorry if some of you just got 43 posts from the feed. I am incredibly sorry to any and all of our people who lost work, i wish there was more i could do. I wish you all good luck with your stuff…


A Plan for a New Media Curriculum – Online Work Conference

February 19th, 2006 It’s been a tough year for blogging. I’ll spare you fine people the details, suffice it to say, that i’ve got a few things that i’m trying to get to. I’ll try and do a wrap up of a few projects this week, and get some help to a few long suffering members, but for today, i wanna talk about my working conference.

A half-hundred times over the last eight months that i’ve been priveledged enough to be a member of the edtechtalk team, the conversation of how we would teach a new media course to educators has come up… i mean, not just to educators, but to anyone really. What would you focus on? Learning objectives? style, format… you name it. The thought of how to collect all this valuable information from some 100 hours of audio crossed my mind for about two seconds before i realized that there was no way i would do it.


And that’s the point. Each member of this community, given a couple of weeks, could put together a reasonable, if not awesome, new media curriculum. The problem is that each one of us is involved in our family lives, our projects, day jobs, blogs… whatever. So what I’m proposing is that we all get together and write a starting point. Not just one single position, but a conglomerate of positions on what a new media curriculum for training teachers would look like. I propose that we all get together for as much time as we have to spare, say at least an hour and up to several hours, on one day, and put together a starting point that everyone can work from.

This is my little intro from the prep-wiki on edtechtalk.

March 12th –> Online at Edtechtalk.

This is a plan for a mass curriculum project. Dave is going to post his work as a starting point, but everyone else is free to take part or all of the curriculum and create their own version or strand. What we’re hoping to get is not one curriculum, where we’ve all had to concede things that are important to us in order to find consensus, but MANY different curricula that are all better for having been made alongside the others.

The plan… hmmm… yes we need one of these. i have some ideas, and have gotten some pretty good advice so far. i’ll try and distill it and put it in. Feel free to drop your own ideas in here as well… it is a wiki.

So, if you’re interested, go on over and add your name, and add your thoughts on the idea. Whatever gets created will be offered up to the community free of anything. It really will be a community project. I want to come out with something that someone could use, even the next day. Given enough people, and the right organization, we could make something really cool happen. Maybe, if we’re lucky, create a seminal document that people could work from… Sounds like a fun way to spend a Sunday afternoon…

oh. and the other reason i want to do an online conference… I was jealous of the people at the Northern Voice Conference… that just sounded too cool.

Wikitextbooks – Moving Forward.

wow. what a week. I’ve been talking to all kinds of cool people over the last week, and have been spending pretty much every waking hour working on either the wikitext project or on the project at my university. The time has come, I think, for a model of where the wikitextbook project could go. There are several different threads at the moment, but I’m just going to focus on the one that answers our original question, and that is, “can a wikitextbook replace textbooks in K-12 classrooms?” This isn’t meant to be a business plan… but a blog post on where I think we should go, it will range far and wide… which might not surprise those who’ve been here before :-)

Thus far the project has been an excellent experience in connective learning. We’ve talked to many different people across different fields and have identified some needs, worked through some guidelines and posited a variety of solutions. The main commentary that i’ve been hearing since the last episode is ‘now it’s time for a plan.’ So, here is a draft proposal.

Ensuring a need – Checking the field
The plan that we are following over the next few weeks is to bring in as much experience as possible to make sure that the wikitextbook project isn’t already being done somewhere else. We have not interest in recreating the wheel. I think that we are doing something different than the two other major instances of wiki textbook projects; wikibooks and wikitextbooks.

building a team – a business and a leader
There are two key members of a preliminary team that are needed in order to get the project started. A person experienced in starting open source projects to write a solid business plan, and a project leader with experience with the software and the community, and, most importantly, considers themselves an educator.

A need for real curriculum – finding starting content
According to bud the thing we really need to do is get some curriculum together. I, to some degree, agree. It could take several months to write the necessary curriculum to fill a wikitextbook, even if the intent were only to create a proof of concept. There are several half-full wiki projects out there, and one of the main criticism that mainstream educators have of them is that they are incomplete.

The kind of group I would like to approach would be the people that Sean is working with. Take a look at Sean’s situation. He has curriculum, needs to constantly update it, and runs into problems with paper publishing. He, and I’m sure many people like him, have an established curriculum and need some expertise and a plan to allow them to deal with their issues. I think that this would be an excellent avenue to go down in order to put together a proof of concept.

Setting up the wiki – structural design
While it is necessary to adapt any curriculum to a wiki environment, having something to work with at the beginning would make it much easier to structure the wiki-environment. Some initial thoughts. There needs to be at least two levels (probably more) of accessibility for the wikitextbook. The core, built from the initial curriculum and the shell, developed by the users of the textbook, and would be the flavour added to the basic curriculum. There needs to be an interactive linking system between the state standards and the curriculum itself. At any time, someone should be able to find curriculum goals and then find the curriculum that that is designed to achieve those goals. A solution for delivering media (audio and video) in terms of hosting would be necessary.

Delivery plan – with teacher planning
The limitations of text force me to put this after the others, but it should be a constant development through the other sections. A way to deliver in classrooms (projectors etc…) would need to be discussed. (for which i will make a crazy suggestion see this link. these are great, bulbs last ten times longer, and they cost 20 bucks. Just need someone to build them.) A way to bring the teachers along in terms of giving them the necessary literacies to be able to teach using this stuff in the classroom. This is the most essential step, and should be followed throughout the project. Teacher buy in is essential.

3 Responses to “Wikitextbooks – Moving Forward.”

  1. john Mullaney Says:
    Dave this is an interesting sketch of a plan. Why not post it to the educationbridges site?
  2. Steve Margetts Says:
    A fascinating post that replicates the debate I have been having with many people over the past year since I started I agree with your excellent post.


  3. dave Says:
    i like cocomment.

Wikibooks – Notes on the project

wow… January is supposed to be involve painful attempts at exercise and sneaking christmas chocolats… not this wicked influx of work. It’s good fun though, and, after taking a couple of hours to chill out and play a little crochinole, i thought i’d post a few notes from the show last Wednesday. The wikitext project may have some legs at this point… just depends on whether or not we get some more involvement.

Things we all agree on.

The technological changes in our society require us to adopt a more flexible and updatable platform for textbooks.
Technology, in and of itself, solves nothing.
This is a social justice issue.
We need validation.
We need a certain amount of control over the content.
A solid, defined plan is needed.

Is it about access to better content?
We were approached by the Nord Family Foundation to start a discussion about wikibooks we started in the position of delivering more current uptodate content. The wiki, then, would be a repository of current updatable information. It would mimic a classroom textbook except that it would, if you had right of access, be updatable with more and more current and accurate information.

Is it about access to better teaching styles?
As a repository for lesson plans and teaching methods, a wiki would be more of a training tool for teachers, so that they could be kept uptodate on the latest ‘best way’ to teach a given subject.

As in the following by Jim Gould…
We have the infrastructure to effect change, and that is lesson study. In a word, lesson study is an ongoing process where a team of teachers teach a few key lessons over and over to different groups of students. The teachers watch each other’s teaching—and the students’ responses, including the extent to which they learned the content being taught.

The result is a collection of a few critical and essential lessons that teach students vital math and science content knowledge. The upshot is that the students become empowered to continue learning at higher levels and have the confidence and desire to stick with a rigorous math and science course of study.

Wiki could be the medium to present these lessons so that affluent schools, poor schools, private schools, public schools, and charter schools could all benefit equally from such a project. After all, the future points to worldwide collaboration between knowledge workers, all of whom are players who know how to take a project apart, distribute the parcels to the best resources, and assemble the completed parts to create new material and non-material goods in demand throughout the World market.

Is it about building better textbooks?
A wikibook could also be about a different kind of textbook. An interactive textbook that students could actually be involved in the creation of. This textbook would have a solid core tied to state standards and then an expanding shell that would be adaptable and would develop according to the needs of the users.

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3 Responses to “Wikibooks – Notes on the project”

  1. ‘Wiki’ Textbooks » Says:
    […] Edit: I’ve just come across Dave Cormier’s (one of the hosts of EdTechTalk) blog entry about wikibooks. […]
  2. sean lancaster Says:
    from what i’ve seen of wikis, i have trouble conceptualizing a textbook that would be useful to other instructors. a wiki tends to have a “page” that is edited and perfected by the community for each individual topic. so, i want to have a unit where my ed tech class places our attention on distance learning in the k-12 classroom. a wiki would be set up to have a page devoted to each specific category, but not the whole chapter that i currently can assign to my students.

    so, with a wikitext, would i just go through the various pages and try and pull together all that apply to the unit i am teaching and just provide my students with a whole list of related, but not connected wiki entries for them to read to help understand the topic? that seems discombobulated to me.

    on the other hand, finding a way to have “chapters” instead of individual “pages” might work, if that is possible with a wiki. then again, the more we decide what those chapters are, the less appealing we make the text. for example, i might want to teach a chapter on issues in educational technology. another person might have a different conceptualization of the issues that i include and might add many others. so now, i am assigning only parts of the chapter to my students, but maybe i want some of those other issues included in another chapter.

    i guess i need to see some examples of a wikitext before i can jump on board. i coordinate an undergraduate ed tech course for future teachers. we have about 20 sections of the course each semester and 4 instructors wrote the textbook we use. i get paid 50 cents a copy, so this was really done to provide our students with a very affordable textbook that meets all of our teaching objectives. i could easy give the textbook up and shift to a wikitext with the same 4 authors. unfortunately, we’d have to start over because our publisher owns what we’ve already written. i am still intrigued with giving this a try for our program. i just wonder how it translates nationally or internationally.

  3. Josh Loewen Says:
    Hi Dave, I just came across your site. There are few Math teachers here in BC who are in the process of starting up a wiki site similar to what you are discussing. I haven’t read all your entries here yet (I have a class in 20 minutes), but I will be reading further soon. We aren’t so much focused on the business model just yet, nor on replacing existing textbooks, but are hoping that collaboration will create a reliable source of supplementary information for our high school Math students.
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