Friday, September 29, 2006

You'll be Jumping off Bridges in no Time, Too.

As you all probably know, Will Richardson is giving a special workshop on the Eighth Floor next week. I'm ever so excited. I know - you all wish I would shut up about him already. But I can't! If you are lucky enough to be enrolled in the class, you'll see what I mean - I'm just sayin'. If you are not lucky enough to be enrolled in the class, I have a consolation prize for you. Will has an article in the October Edition of Edutopia that is pretty darn interesting.

Yep, if he jumped off a bridge, I'd probably jump off right behind him. W A I T, I think that's exactly what I did in my Monday night Comp 1 class last week. We had class in a computer equipped class room that night because we were going to end with an in-class writing. First, however, we had some very, really, always important stuff to talk about - stories we'd read from the reader that sould teach us about narration and description and extremely important information we gleaned from several titillating chapters of our handbook. Honestly, I was as bored as they were, and I'm not a super boring teacher (well, I don't think so, usually). They could not keep their hands of the computers that were in front of them - don't blame'em. So in an effort to keep their attention and interest them in the material, I started dancing faster and faster - spinning to the point of nearly losing consciousness. At least that's the only explanation I have for what happened next. I heard the words come out of my mouth, "Next week, we are going to build a wiki and you guys are going to teach each other this stuff. How many of you know what a wiki is? Your job this week is to find out - what do they look like, how do they work, etc." At the same time I'm laughing (howling!) at myself because, guess what, I have to learn those things too, double quick. Actually, it's not that desperate. I've played with them quite a bit. I'm still laughing on the inside. It's better than crying - that'll be Sunday night before class on Monday.

I'm optimistic! I had their attention instantly. They were asking questions about wikis left and right - I told them enough to make them go look for more. I put links on BlackBoard about wikis, and 90% of them have been on there every day - EVERY DAY! They are going to have to explain and define and teach us all about writing stuff - you know, that titillating stuff. When I told them that they would be published on the web and I'd be telling people about this, they got serious. They wanted to know who was going to check to make sure they didn't look like fools. I told them they were. HA!

What better way to learn than to teach, right? I'll let you know how it goes.

Lee Anne


kkbrew said...

Nice place you have here. I love what you've done with the curtains. By the way, didn't your mama tell you about following people off of bridges? Anyway, I love your wiki assignment, and I've convinced this is one of the real innovations for online learning that will explode in the next few years, leaving those of us who don't know how to do it behind in the aftermath. (My that's a violent metaphor that I didn't really intend to use, but you never know what these fingers of mine will do once on the keyboard.)

Nonetheless, I want to know more, Mrs. Morris. How can I do that?!

Lee Anne said...

Why, funny you should ask. It just so happens that the Eighth Floor is offering two classes, Wiki When You Wanna! Both classes are in November. Check out the schedule on our website: