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March 19, 2008

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Dan Meyer

Great video, of course. A stretch for the definition, imo, though I don't doubt your ability to sell it.

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Christian's response:

Thought you might like the vid, Dan. Forget the "dig:nats" connection. Frankly it just rocks. Perhaps that is all that really matters when all is said and done.

Curious. For a guy who seems to have little time for the entire "digital native" construct (if I am reading the criticism in your your own blog posts accurately), is it perhaps ironic that you see it as a "stretch for the definition"? (he smiles) Wouldn't you have to accept the premise in order to see one example as better than another. (he wonders)

A question back to you: What IS a reasonable and 'tangible' example that showcases "dig:nats" in the affirmative, rather than just highlighting the weaknesses of Prensky's concept? Love to have other options to share with my audience. Plus, it'll give me a better grasp of what you see value in when it comes to Prensky's phrase.

BTW, I don't pretend that this vid is THE definition. Nah. Not even close (even if I am marketing my post a bit by suggesting that I found the best example ever, ever, ever - wink). On the other hand, it IS a great way to introduce the concept during my upcoming presentation, especially based on my presentation style.

As for your point about my ability "to sell it", ain't [sic] that the ultimate point?

Anytime we take something from one domain and give it new life in a different realm altogether, doesn't it become a 'sales' job from syllable #1 in order to help an audience see it in a new way?

Thanks for swinging by, my friend.

Dan Meyer

Yer right. I'm more than a little cynical about the whole digital native fetish but I think I interpret its spirit rightly and I don't think Mae Shi would even be in the running had you not found it on the weblog of yer absolute favorite digital native.

I can't recommend an alternative but an essential component of the digital native is a kid who can use new media and distribution models (which don't discriminate by age) and enact larger, sometimes social, change.

"Run To Your Grave" has the anarchy which you associate with the movement (down with experts!) but little else, I think.

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Christian's response:

I can live with your response that you don't find this specific video to be an apt example of the "dig:nat" concept. At a certain point in time, opinion varies.

What I do hold to be true, however, is that it opens up the door for conversation about this metaphor.

What bothers me about other examples -- options: ah, hello, kid sitting at laptop; how about that laptop image; here are three kids talking on cell phones at the mall; etc. -- require ONLY an image of a recent technology to be near a person under the age of 21 to demonstrate the "dig:nat" idea. Not sure I can take even one more blogged PPt slide deck showing yet another kid/teacher in front of a laptop as a definer of 21C schooling, "dig:nat's", etc..

Which brings me back -- one more time -- to asking you for an alternative, even if one doesn't exist in your mind right this second. There MUST be an example that lives up to the definition parameters you offered above (which I quite like, actually).

As for the "down with experts" element, I'm not sure where you fully align that with my thinking or blogging as a central feature. I think you've found a scarecrow that ain't even in my field, to be honest. Do I question that premise that all learning needs an expert at the front of the room when considering future school models? Certainly, but only as a starting point conversationally. Until that becomes a reality, however, I'm quite content to be paid to show up to school where a white board awaits my shadow.

Re: the "anarchy" piece you pulled out, what matters most to me is that the reverse demographic -- "digital immigrants" (for lack of a perfect phrase) -- often misread activities as useless "chaos" rather than to see a gestalt pattern forming. This does not advocate a need for anarchy. What it does require, however, is a choice on the part of the 'older' folk to re-think their immediate assumptions when they see an evolution of thinking, technology, collaboration, 'noise', etc.

Call that an advocacy of "anarchy", then I'm fine. But I'm not sure that's what I'm even coming close to waving a flag for.

Again, thanks for pushing my thinking on this. Regardless of our semantic agreement or disagreement, I would love an example from you -- one day -- that you think is better framed. Maybe in a week or 52 you can throw one my way? Happy to wait...

Tim

It takes a lot of planning to pull off that kind of chaos and make it entertaining at the same time. I think it makes a great metaphor for much of web 2.0.

Take Facebook as an example. To a casual visitor (re: digital immigrant [cough, cough]), it all looks like pandemonium. But serious members of that community put a lot of effort into making their pages reflect themselves. According to a wonderful audio documentary called Design of Desire, kids on social networking sites are creating their own brands.

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Christian's response:

So pleased you mentioned the idea of "creating their own brands". I realize you mean this in a more technological sense, but I am convinced that the idea of 'branding' will become more and more relevant to the way students put their best ideas out there in the world, whether that is to apply to colleges, to sell a product/service, or to become known as an 'expert' wherever they want to be seen as such.

Oh, and you're spot-on as far as the time/effort required to make a video like this that appears at first glance to be chaotic. Just the choices they made to lip-synch to a slowed-down version of the video, or vice versa, is a great example of blocking a concept out ahead of time. It's a bit jarring to the eye at first, but in time it can turn it into something really striking!

Paul

It is interesting how Casting Crowns music gets used in different plays and shows. One youth group recently did a hand backlight play to Casting Crowns "Who Am I" song. I've got this awesome video clip on my website, chck it out here http://www.christiansnewswire.com/Product/CastingCrownsPics.html

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