October 10, 2007

(Wo)man of Web 2.0 Skypecast

I had a ball this afternoon, October 10th, sitting as a Scottish educator in New Zealand debating with teachers working in 'yesterday', October 9th, about tomorrow's opportunities. If only the time difference really did allow us to gaze into the crystal ball...

The Women of Web 2.0 invited David Jakes and me to their Tuesday night shindig of a debate, with over 60 educators from all over the planet tuning in to the live Skypecast 'radio show' and chipping in on the chat zone. It was great to see Neil Winton back home chipping in with some great wee points about the superb work he's doing, helping to back up some of what David and I were saying, and I was indebted to Suzie in my new 'home' of NZ for relaying the chat over to me, as I sat in a local high school which wouldn't quite let me get into that (but which was great at allowing YouTube, Flickr etc etc).

We covered a lot of ground, but the main things that I was trying to get across were:

  • We must make sure that we call a spade a spade when dealing with new technology. Pandering to 'baby speak' when it comes to new technologies will only delay the inevitable; better that educators accept the 'jargon' that their teens see as normal vocabulary.
  • It's easy to assume that all teachers have an equal understanding of educational jargon; we don't. Blogs, wikis and podcasts might be unsavoury vocabulary for many educators, used as a way to escape having to learn new skills. What about assessment for learning, assessment as learning, inquiry skills, rich tasks, cooperative learning... For many educators these still remain meaningless jargon, but arguably are even more worthy of attention than blogs, wikis and podcasts. At least with the former, the latter begin to make sense.
  • Small agile nations seem to be doing best in the education world. What can big nations do to become more like exciting energised startups than large corporations?

I think you'll be able to download the full hour long debate from the Women of Web 2.0 wiki soon. The full audio and text from the chat is available


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You're right. There is always new jargon in teaching. My particular bete noir for ages was Grade Related Criteria ....

Thank you again SO MUCH for being on our show..........

and you are right -- I still can figure out pedagogy (probably can't spell it either) or synchronous and asynchronous..........

Plus a DOZEN or so more "Educaty" words!!

Thanks again - I very much enjoyed listening to your ideas.


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About Ewan

Ewan McIntosh is a teacher, speaker and investor, regarded as one of Europe’s foremost experts in digital media for public services.

His company, NoTosh Limited, invests in tech startups and film on behalf of public and private investors, works with those companies to build their creative businesses, and takes the lessons learnt from the way these people work back into schools and universities across the world.

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