In the introduction to my thesis with the working title “Navigating Distributed Knowledge with the use of Web Tools” I wrote:
A major change in education has been the emergence of a distributed knowledge and the use of Internet in teaching practices. Humans have throughout history used tools to increase our understanding of the world. Social networks have always been part of our learning, but can be amplified by the tools we have available.
Without the right tool, many tasks are difficult or impossible. One tool is not suited for all purposes, but a useful tool can inspire people to use it in different ways and better tools for specific jobs will constantly be developed.
The idea of a toolkit for the networked teacher seems daunting, but I believe certain functions and main activities will remain. Let’s start with six activities and try to find practical examples that can create specific measurable results (this is normally good to keep up the motivation):
-Listen to a conference presentation
-Create a blog where you introduce yourself and your interests. Demonstrate what is your standpoint and refer (ping back or track back) to content that relate with your ideas.
2. Publishing & Sharing:
-Record your own audio or video presentation
-Upload a slide presentation to Slideshare or similar site
-Create and add social visual artifacts with tags (Flickr, Youtube etc.).
-Share your tags and social bookmarks
-Participate in network sub-clusters (such hashtag communities based on user-defined Folksonomies) with others who share similar interests
4. Self-organization of the learning process:
-Write a blog post (or Twitter) about something you have learned or reflect on your daily practice, create new content that is important to you (add keywords or tags)
-Bookmark and tag useful sources on a site like Delicious or Diigo (subscribe tags of interest) so that you can organize knowledge in a manner that is personally meaningful
-Analyze information who are the visitors of your blog (WordPress statistic on the dashboard)
5. Creating a social network:
– Develop mutual relationships and connect through feed readers or micro-blogging
– Take contact with new people with similar interest that you stumble upon (subscribe to their feeds)
– Make new friends and professional contacts for collaboration, events participation, chatting, etc. Make direct links between your own blog and their blog.
-Join with people’s social bookmark networks
6. Searching the net:
-Do search on a topic of interest and include Google Blog Search, Google News Search, Delicious, Slideshare, and Youtube.
-Follow the hash-tags or tags in tagcloud to analyse, which tags might be of interest, find the versions of the tags for your blog. The appropriate tags will give you direct contact to people who use these tags for marking their contributions.
To be continued…