Quote: "The three dimensions of learning--knowing, making, and playing--are already beginning to emerge within the fabric of the digital world itself" (Thomas and Brown, 99). I chose this quote because it discusses the main of the chapter, which is that learning is comprised of the three dimensions listed above. In addition, these three dimensions manifest within the digital world, a fact of which our education system has not (yet) taken full advantage.
Question: How can I better utilize all three of the dimensions of learning in my class?
Connection: The authors describes a survey from 2006 in which 63% of the 18 to 24 year olds surveyed could not locate the nation of Iraq on a map of the Middle East. This took me back to the seventh grade. For the final exam in the first semester, my classmates and I were each given a world map from which we would name every country. As a whole, our class had done poorly on the exam, and my teacher made us all retake it later in the year.
Epiphany: All three dimensions of learning are manifesting in the digital world--this is why kids are learning so much from the Internet that they're not getting in school. This also suggests to me that kids don't get the full experience of the three dimensions. I bet we could get more kids excited about school and help them enjoy and value the experience, finding relevance and meaning in what they learn, if we could somehow make better use of the three dimensions.
Quote: "Geeking out asks the question: How can I utilize the available resources, both social and technological, for deep exploration?" (Thomas and Brown, 105). I chose this quote because it asks a question with complex answers. Thomas and Brown discuss the depths to which teens and young adults engage with social media, namely "hanging out, messing around, and geeking out" (Thomas and Brown, 100). Geeking out is the deepest of the three levels of engagement, and as such it is here that we can find the most applicable uses of social media.
Question: For those who reach the geeking out stage, where do they go from there? Is there another level?
Connection: Two of my courses in the Single Subject Credential Program are concerned with exploring ways to help students become digitally literate while teaching them the content of my subject area. In these courses, I obtain three badges to demonstrate that I have satisfied the expectations of the course. Meeting the expectations of the first course grants the Hanging Out Badge, while fulfilling the expectations of the second course grants the Messing Around Badge and the Geeking Out Badge. As I progress from badge to badge, I engage deeper within online communities and I learn more about how to use technology to learn how to teach more effectively, how to implement technology within my class, and how to connect with educators in order for us to help each other.
Epiphany: Each of these three levels of engagement asks a question and is a way for people to foster collective indwelling. On the path from "hanging out" through "messing around" and transforming into "geeking out," we basically determine our place in online communities and how we want to, and can, participate.
Quote: "And where imaginations play, learning happens" (Thomas and Brown, 118). This quote sums up the message the authors convey over the entirety of their book. That message is that people need to be able to play with their creativity or imagination in order to learn.
Question: How do we harness the play that kids employ in games apply it to the classes we teach? How we help kids to enjoy learning in our classes the way they enjoy playing games?
Connection: I enjoy teaching, and I love working with kids. The experience is emotionally rewarding, and it's a lot of fun. My profession is a place where work and play are synonymous for me.
Epiphany: As I mentioned in my previous post, I grew up thinking that learning and school are work while games are play, but that work and play don't really overlap. Thomas and Brown propose that the two can be one and the same, and that the new culture of learning operates on this premise. The idea here is that learning should be fun and that we are supposed to employ our creativity and imaginations in our learning. As the authors state, "play is more than something we do, it is who are" (Thomas and Brown, 116).
Thomas, D., & Brown, J. (2011). A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change. Lexington, KY. Createspace?