Posts Tagged ‘Jim Groom aka Pure Unadulterated Hotness’

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Saturday, February 4th, 2012

Our professors are beginning a new romance. As young people continue to use emerging technologies in their personal lives, a large number of educators are finding ways to meaningfully integrate technologies in the classroom, and are falling in love. And why shouldn’t they?

There is soo many shiny, pretty tools including blogs, Wikipedia, podcasts, Twitter, and Youboodtube. What makes these tools so compelling is the nature of communication on the web. As our friend Bryan Alexander writes, “Web 2.0 has led to an explosion of user-generated content” or as our other friend Tim O’Reilly says,  “[Web 2.0] harnesses collective intelligence.” Global interaction never felt so good.

Our infatuated friend Bryan shows us different techniques of storytelling and what makes a successful story. With the web, storytelling has expanding beyond our traditional definitions. A single photo is as rich of a story as Dickinson, and you don’t need to be Dickinson to have your story heard. The web enables us to share and create our own stories with anyone, including our professors.

Moreover, digital storytelling (hey ds106) extends beyond the classroom. This creative work provides students a foundation for what we’ll call 21st century literacy, which includes digital literacy (e.g. blogz), technological literacy (e.g. code), visual literacy, informational literacy, etc. Digital storytelling is exactly what students want to learn, because so much of what we do in ‘real world’ involves these skills. The situation is analogous to the education shift to using software programs in the classroom back in the mid-90’s.

Now we just need more professors to get bit by this love bug.

Slowly, Slowly I Embrace the Internet

Sunday, January 29th, 2012

I like to keep the Internet at a distance. I like to watch it at a safe distance and hope my ‘fight-or-flight’ instincts do not start to kick in. However, this semester I sought to change this behavior.

So, I enrolled in Digital Storytelling  (DS106) with instructor Jim Groom for my final semester of undergrad. I expected to learn a few tips and tricks about blogging and that’s about it. Honestly, I was expecting an easy ‘A’. What I did not expect was being left on an Internet island of doom with a domain name and no map.

Now, I am in the driver seat with a steep learning curve ahead. In the last week I was able to successfully connect my domain name (mc-guirk.us) with a webhost, installed WordPress (most proud of that one), and successfully installed a WordPress theme. Easy.

Not easy: learning why the next day it all disappeared. Network caching is a horrible, horrible thing, but my to-do list is slowly getting accomplished.

To Do:

1. Install Akismet API key, check.

2. Subscribe to Comments, check.

3. Install Titter Tools, check but still working on it too.

4. Get JetPack, check, still need to learn more about what it does.

Currently, I’m working on the sites look, how to customize its font, and where my blog posts go (don’t judge). In short, Jim Groom, fellow ds106 pioneers and my parents, I look forward to embracing this new challenge and seriously would love any tips you can throw my direction.