I’ve recently come across the Web 2.0 video by Michael Wesch on several blogs, including Chris Lehmann’s Practical Theory blog. It’s an interesting look at Web 2.0 and should serve as an appropriate springboard for our discussions related to Web 2.0, School 2.0 and some of the current (re)thinking in which we are currently engaged.
Watching the video, I thought about much of the Internet work I was fortunate to be involved with while teaching high school English in the mid-nineties. I worked with a small cadre of very talented students, most of whom went on to schools such as Carnegie Mellon and MIT. The rub, however, is that most of the students in the school were not a part of this fairly elite group of students who were totally engaged in various projects.
Of course, Web 2.0 changes everything. It changes things in so many ways, and the video really captures this quite well.
By eliminating the need for sophisticated web software, the ability to code in html, and a general knowledge of FTP, web publishing is now something of which every student can take advantage. It’s our responsibility as educators to determine where this supports our various curricula and look for ways to exploit its potential in a (positively) disruptive manner. We can certainly engage our students in ways that are not restricted to the traditional classroom. Please take a few minutes to watch the video and comment as appropriate.