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April 22, 2008

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Dean Shareski

I read the article and what strikes me right away is that although the professor is using technology in all sorts of glitzy ways, there was no mention of how the students were to engage with material beyond watching the professor to his schtick. Unless you are the most amazing storyteller in the world, I think it's unrealistic to expect students to come into class every day and listen or watch in a one way classroom. That's the big idea for me. One way vs. Two Way. Technology affords us ways to interact with ideas in ways we couldn't before. But great teachers have long figured out that the interaction with ideas or constructivism creates active, engaged learners.

Janice Smith

It's interesting because I recently attended a tech conference where one of the presenters encouraged us to join a Twitter like conversation WHILE he was presenting. He described it to us first as a way for audience members to keep themselves actively engaged while someone was presenting. Confused about what was just demonstrated? Tweet it out to everyone else in the discussion. Perhaps they can clarify. Something really struck you? Start a side-conversation about it. It definitely led to some deeper thinking about the presentation, and afterwards he goes back and reads the discussion and inserts his own comments/answers which I think is a fascinating way to encourage follow-up, ensuring that the dialogue doesn't conclude along with the workshop.

I still have my hesitations about whether this adds to a presentation or detracts from it (there was a lot I can only assume I missed while reading other comments on the discussion), but it certainly does solve the problem of how we use the technology to engage everyone.

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