plakboek (plakboek) wrote,

Lunchbox Eels

Learning is messy, especially when we are working online. This is why it should be gently steered by a educator with a hand on the steering wheel, an eye on the road and a memory for the current research findings.

It was recently mentioned on the ozteachers list that students should only use a particular blogging tool. It raises some important questions including:
  • is this a position statement, recommended policy decision or mandated instruction?
  • what is the pedagogical basis and research that underpins this?
  • is the scope limited to classrooms or can it telescope to embrace professional learning networks and microblogging?

I use the blogging tool built inside Moodle, there is another inside Ultranet. I use it for the right pedagogical reasons, a full understanding about the issues and at times I appreciate the closed and controlled nature. It is a sandpit that will evaporate after they leave the school. By contrast, I also use classroom tools that overlap with blogging including Diigo, Wikispaces, GoogleReader and more. Even Scratch has a built in blogging tool.

Trying to shackle our teaching by mandating a particular tool is akin to stuffing slippery eels into lunch boxes, after a while we will either give up on eating, put up with cooked tuna sandwiches or buy lunch at the shops. It makes as much curriculum sense as mandating the teaching of levers in week 3, a universal textbook for each subject or teaching only with over head projectors.

Using different and new blogging tools in the right ways and for the right reasons; that is hard, but it is the real world.

I am curious what others might think?
Tags: blog, blogging, curriculum, education, moodle, privacy, ultranet
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