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Education: science, profession or...

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Oops, I heard it again. It is like that Breathy Spears song: Oops!...I Did It Again. It is not very logical, but people are singing it.

Yes, twice last week I heard something like:
All you need to be a good teacher is to follow your instincts/feelings.
Hmm… how logical is that statement?

Not very.

Teaching as a science and profession has become very sophisticated- much like medicine. Unfortunately, it is very often undervalued: just like medicine was undervalued during the middle ages.

Learning 2.0

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Last week we said s few words about the World 2.0, we mentioned the Business 2.0 and Web 2.0… but what about the Learning 2.0?

Changes. We can witness huge changes in the educational system; at least in a part of it. Maybe some of us can not notice the differences in our departments, but the changes are already here – they are just unevenly distributed.
You remember what Mr. William Ford Gibson said: The future is already here - it is just unevenly distributed.
Living the future. Yes, some schools, colleges, even universities are considering wiki, web 2.0 communities, tagging, blogs, as a tools they may use in the future. Others… others are living in that future.
Living that future – now.

Education is the kindling of a flame

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24 centuries ago a famous Greek philosopher, Socrates, said:

Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.

Now, 24 centuries after, this quote is equally relevant – if not even more so. Do we teach or do we preach, do we kindle a flame or do we fill a vessel – the question is now.

Two worlds. For many kids coming to school means coming from an highly interactive, colorful, collaborative world into a place where information flows just in one direction; a place where you have to switch out your batteries, sit and listen.

Why is this?

Scarcity of information. From the dawn of time until recently scarcity of information was the key factor in our society. We did not have data, we were not able to collaborate with an expert from another city, another country, we were not able to publish data on YouTube, MySpace, Wikis, Blogs, we were not able to collaborate with millions of peers…

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 September 2009 17:47

Personal Learning & Working Environment

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Moodle is an open source Learning Management System used and tested by 31,685,885 users and 1,888,393 teachers from 210 countries (http://moodle.org/stats/). Yes, that huge community is a pillar of Moodle’s sucess. Numerous discussions ‘what is the best learning management system’ are happening all around the globe, and… in more than a few discussions, the conclusion is that Moodle is the winner (1, 2). Some people are skeptic, however: how can a free opensource software be better than one expensive closed proprietary software? Simply it can. For example Apache web server is used by 30.000 more web servers than Microsoft’s servers (30% difference); two years ago Microsoft paid $15 billion for FaceBook – an social website build up on free open source PHP technology. So, yes, the open source can be the best solution.

And it is used by countless for profit and nonprofit corporations, same as the University of Illinois, the Columbia College and many other universities and schools all around the globe. …

News? Since recently, Google applications can be integrated into domain and in Moodle. So we did it. We can use all Google Applications – education edition, we can use iGoogle, and we can create a personal learning and working environment.

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 September 2009 17:31