Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Learning 2.0 in the BoogieDown

BoogieDowner got a ping on a GothamSchools.org article by Elizabeth Green which reports that the students of CIS 339 on Webster Avenue near Claremont Park think that President-elect Obama should put improving education at the top of his to-do list.

Perhaps the most interesting thing about this story is the method by which the students communicated their opinions regarding what they feel Obama's priorities should be... by posting them on their class blogs. That's right - blogging is part of the students' homework.

There's a link in the Gotham Schools article to another piece previously written by Ms. Green for the Village Voice a few weeks ago regarding what educators refer to as "Learning 2.0," which is essentially working with students to find positive ways to integrate social networking and other technological advances into the curriculum.

The lucky students at CIS 339 use laptops and Google Documents instead of pens and paper, and teachers use Smart Boards rather than blackboards. Students are able to "publish" their work for their other classmates to read and critique, and are also able to create MySpace-like user profiles.

So how's this somewhat revolutionary approach to education working out so far? Pretty damn well, it seems. One student improved from a third grade level to nearly a sixth grade level in the span of just a few months, and students are literally rushing to get to Social Studies on time because sometimes they have the opportunity to go on Google Earth in class.

Click here to read the full Village Voice piece.


No comments: