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Bud the Teacher
November 5, 2012
"The more I dig back, too, into history, or, at least, the stuff that was written in the past on many of the issues facing us as educators right now," writes Bud Hunt, "the more I’m certain that time spent reading the work of before is worth doing." Quite so, and that's why I'm all in favour of his proposal, as the title suggests, to "start an #eduhistory book club." The first text he recommends is the Committee of Ten Report, published in 1893, recommending courses of study for American students (beginning, of course, with Latin and Greek (though lamenting (p. 80) that so few colleges recommend through rntrance exams the reading by sight of Greek texts)). You can see the reasoning - this is the text that defined, if not the exact curriculum, then at least the idea of curriculum, in U.S. education. Though one wonders why a history course wouldn't begin with earlier works, such as Rousseau's 1762 work Emile or perhaps Horace Mann's 1855 Lectures on Education. Then again, as Audrey Watters notes, it's better than "Sal Khan’s History of Education that leaves out the entire twentieth century and the contributions of progressive education."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Books, United States, Assessment]
Bud Hunt says this is a 'mixed message': "Your thoughts and ideas and writing are so important that, rather than investing in other people to mentor you and nurture your abilities, I’m going to have you put your words into a machine so I don’t have to be bothered to look at them." Well, maybe not so much mixed. Anyhow, this post if a follow-up to the "strong" responses to that original post on automated essay grading and is more fully thought-out than the first, though ending up in the same (and IMHO correct) position: "the fervor with which I suspect machine grading of writing will be adopted suggests the real problem – we don’t actually want to read and write with our students."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Mentors and Mentoring]
September 16, 2011
Good overview and discussion of the Mozilla badges project. "If badges transform all grades that matter into “pass/fail” situations, well, that might be something. To match what students can do with their academic credentials as measured by actual performance tasks would be a good thing. But, if the DML competition encourages thinking and writing and exploration and action around ideas like the idea that any accountability system, or accreditation system, is ultimately a subjective system, made by people, however we design it, then I say, let’s rock. But let’s do so carefully."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Project Based Learning, Assessment, Academia]
August 25, 2011
To be clear: when George Siemens and I talk about Connective learning and all the rest of it, we are not making claims of novelty. Rather, we are trying to gather and summarize and explain what we believe to be effective practice. Hence, when we see a headline that says something ike "connective such-and-such not novel" we view this as support for Connectivism, and not some oblique refutation of it (I'm pretty sure George feels this way; I know I do). I'm not saying Bud Hunt is out to refute us here; probably the opposite But I do know form experience that many people equate "not novel" with some sort of refutation, as though launching a new theory in education one a yea is a good thing.
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Connectivism, Experience, Online Learning]
March 31, 2011
Bud Hunt asks urgently for support for the (U.S.) National Writing Project. "As of October 1st, 2011, there will be no federally funded National Writing Project. In preparation for that, the NWP laid off 60 percent of its staff last week and announced to local site directors that they will have to reduce their local funding by 25 percent. And that breaks my heart. And I need your help to fix this mess."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: none]
September 30, 2010
Bud Hunt is not waiting for Superman. "Now, there's plenty of work to do, and it's hard and scary and painful and dangerous. And some of us won't make it. But it's good and important and noble work, and it's worth doing. And the television these last ten days hasn't been helping. It's been getting in the way. So I'm turning it off and moving on."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Video]
May 20, 2010
I've been messing around over the last few days with the ePub ebook specification. I've been inspired by this post from Bud Hunt, in ehich he embeds a link to an ebook (in .epub format) into his RSS feed. Did it work for me? Not out of the box - I needed to download and install an eBook reader. Hunt suggested Calibre, which doesn't just read eBooks but will also upload them to a variety of readers - a lot like iTines, but without the vendor lock-in. Authoring is a bit more involved - Adobe has a product called inDesign, but at $US 600 it's definitely overkill. Calibre will convert PDF to ePub, and Hunt uses InstaPaper to generate output from web sites. I also found a program called eCub (cute) which works but has its quirks.
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Books, RSS]
May 13, 2010
Bud Hunt argues that learning is social, something I argued against in Argentina. That is not to say that social phenomena play no role in education - that would be an absurd position - but rather to make the (important, I think) point that learning does not, cannot, reduce to descriptions of social phenomena. Indeed, this is where you run into dangers, where you run into such misconstrued notions as 'learning is alignment' or 'learning is commerce' or 'learning is conformity'.
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: none]
October 6, 2009
Here's an article you should probably clip and save for people who want you to blog websites in schools. "What we've decided is that we will no longer use the web filter as a classroom management tool. Blocking one distraction doesn't solve the problem of students off task – it just encourages them to find another site to distract them. Students off task is not a technology problem – it's a behavior problem." Meanwhile, from Teach Paperless, "Last week a Twitter Pal told me, 'You should have seen our district's librarians cheering because they got Wikipedia blocked.' To which I responded, 'You should have walked into each library, grabbed all those World Books and Britannicas, and set fire to them in the parking lot. Same thing.'"
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Schools, Twitter, Web Logs, Wikipedia]
September 8, 2009
Darren Draper explains why he decided to block facebook in the classroom. "it's a matter of fighting for balance and the cognitive attention of our students... students have tended to spend inordinate amounts of time on the site - forming gangs, playing cards, writing on walls, and poking each other." Bud Hunt replies, "There are an awful lot of distractions on the Internet. Every time we focus on them, we draw attention to them and away from the educational goals and objectives we'd like to, and should be, focusing on. Let's all stop doing that."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Books, Online Learning]
July 10, 2009
Bud Hunt offers a one-line post, "that writing, or at least composition, remains about the closest thing to learning in a bottle that I've found so far," with a link to a fascinating co-creation tool called Etherpad. to record the responses. I like. I posted my own response to my blog as well as into the co-creation site.
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Web Logs]
November 26, 2007
Last year Tony Karrer suggested that blogging may decline in 2007. And this trend has been evident since 2005. And I said it was cresting in 2004. So Ryan Bretag's suggestion that "blogs need to evolve or face a sure death of stagnation" is, if anything, stale-dated. Which is why we need posts like this from Bud Hunt to remind people that there is no 'one blogosphere', much less no 'one edublogosphere'. Blogging will continue so long as the act of blogging benefits the person doing the blogger. This may or may not involve personal transformation - you know, just having a place to write works too. Related: Tom Hoffman on web publishing for people who don't want to publish to the web.
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Books, Web Logs, Online Learning]
April 11, 2007
As Bud Hunt reports, "Yahoo is about to launch some sort of teacher tool." The Yahoo site says, "Get ready to create, modify, and share standards-based curriculum.". As Hunt says, "Oh, rapture." More seriously, Hunt questions the recent branding companies like Yahoo and Google have brought to education. "I wonder what others think about whether or not a few hours spent with a corporate cadre is a meaningful certification. Sure doesn't sound like one, at least from much of what I see. But teachers get something out of that deal, I'm sure. Why else would so many folks become Discovery STAR Educators, or Google Certified Teachers, or Yahoo Teachers of Merit?" Maybe I should accredit "Stephen Certified Teachers."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Yahoo!, Branding, Google]
October 20, 2006
I had an interesting listen this morning to this conversation between Bud Hunt and Ed Tech Talk's Dave Cormier. Recorded before my comments posted on Half an Hour yesterday, but after my initial reaction in this blog, the discussion explores whether the conference process distorts the blogging ethos. Of significant note to me, and something that should give people pause, is the association of the conference with a grad credit program offered by Plymouth State and Shanghai American school. Is it any surprise that Jeff Utrecht, who is one of the Techlearning bloggers I mentioned, is managing the course? I wonder whether the people who were talking about this being a "volunteer" effort offered for "free" would care to comment on the money changing hands here.
P.S. to Dian P, who writes, "Where else am I going to hear so many different expert/learners or adventurers along this new road?" Answer: their blogs. Here's a list. Don't like my list? Make your own. [Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Schools, Traditional and Online Courses, United States, Web Logs, China]
May 31, 2006
Haven't seen the video, but still, this is a great example of the sort of thing I talk about from time to time: "What happens when your game is more than a game? How about Othello, World of Warcraft style? One of my students produced this video as his final project for my Shakespeare course this year. He chose to involve his family in the project (they help with the voice work) and to shoot the abridged performance via a network of computers in his home."
[Comment] [Direct Link] [Tags: Gaming, Project Based Learning, Video, Networks]