A few weeks ago I
highlighted some videos made by Michael Wesch and his students at Kansas
State University. If you haven’t seen them, I encourage you to do so.
Warlick liked A Vision of Students Today. Gary
Stager didn’t. And Michael was stirred to make a
clarification. The comments on all three blog posts are informative and
The great part of the Web, of course, is that it makes all of this
conversation public, transparent, open to participation by others, and, dare I
say, even possible. Sure, before the Internet and blogs existed, Michael, David,
and Gary could have exchanged thoughts about Michael’s work via mail or e-mail.
But this is more powerful (and much more fun).
The difference pre and post-blogosphere is that nobody would have seen the video a few years ago and therefore noted educators would not be labeling it “amazing” or applying special significance to it.
I’m finding it difficult to write in such a way that readers understand that I don’t care about this or that particular student project as much as I am alarmed by the irrational exuberance afforded such artifacts.
Since the blogosphere is typically in the first-person, I struggle with “attacking the ball without attacking the player.”
All the best,
I read the links, and found Gary’s opinion very knee-jerk. After thinking about it some more, I wrote a post trying to frame the whole issue in a different way. http://globalvirtual.blogspot.com/2007/11/elbonian-takeover.html
Gary, that’s a great point. One of the things I note about my law school experience was that they did a great job of teaching us how to have fierce, intellectual conversations and disagreements without taking it personally. In other words, we could have a ferocious, no-holds barred (and phenomenal) conversation about some legal issue and then go out for a beer afterward, enlighted by the others’ viewpoint. Sometimes the edublogosphere could benefit from a little more of that…
It may be a “student” artifact, but there are few of those that have such wide circulation. Also, whether intended or not, this is a propaganda piece about education, and how it is out of sync with modern life. It’s reached more people, and more importantly, more non-educators rather than the usual stakeholders that you, or Mr. Stager, reach. It may not read like a graduate thesis, or a Truffaut oeuvre, or even a “slick” political ad, but that will give it a real and genuine quality making it more believable to the general audience and therefore more effective. Mr. Stager may give it an “D” as a college level project, I give it an “A” as a college level speech and propaganda project. Political propaganda does not need to name a solution, it only needs to name a problem.
Thanks for the spot to share my views…
Jeremy’s Elbonian education reforms post: a really nice piece of satire. Much more interesting than just writing a ten point rebuttal. More interesting for him to write, more interesting for me to read ;-).