Learning about teaching in Second Life

Jass Easterman aka Sue Gregory from the University of New England talking about her role in working with a range of students. They were learning how to use Second Life in their future professional teaching career. This is a story of what Sue was doing. The audio is a feed out of the conference, so at time’s shes answering comments and questions in the back channel. I found it facinating to hear some of experience.

Recorded at the 2008 Jokaydia Unconference. Here’s the link to the Sue Gregory Podcast.

Unconference Day#1

Peggy was talking about Ramapo Islands. Not the usual stuff, but sharing a lot about how she sold the idea into administrators, how she has been strategically designing the islands to suit the needs of her learners and some of the projects and outcomes that she has been running.

A fantastic, in depth look at innovation in education.

Jo, Konrad and Al, were touring Newbies around the gardens, and it was great to hear so many new people asking questions and sharing ideas on how they can use virtual worlds in their classrooms.

Chris (aka Gnu) and Jeff did a really engaging session on Microblogging.

Jeff’s off the cuff story telling of his own journey into developing and participating in a personal learning network was a really powerful message. Jeff (aka teacherman79 or Henny) used lots of examples of just how he’s been using it for his personal development as well as digital story telling in his classroom.

He talked about collecting a bunch of old PCs today that we’re being thrown out, so he can use them in his classroom, and shared how he had to take the truck and his dog up there to get them, then his dog chewed through its leash. He used his phone to shoot pictures and upload the event to a microblog – so when the kids get the computers, they’ll get the story of what he did to get them. He said that kids are such visual learners, that he’s trying to capture as much of ‘life’ as he can and then use that for further discussion in the classroom.

He also talked about how Montana is isolated, and how he now feels connected like never before in a personal learning network. Its amazing to think how a passing conversation in a virtual world can lead people to make such powerful and ever changing connections with their learning.

I loved that his story was about TODAY – and so relevant to what he is doing TOMORROW.

That’s the difference I think that many in the Jokadia community offer – far less engaged in ‘gazing at the why’ – which seems to me in perpetual orbit in some online sessions – and more about conversational learning that happens right now. I learned a lot today from Peggy, Jeff, Chris and Leigh Blackall … and it was great to see Sue Waters and Judy O’Connell – whom are a constant source of inspiration.

I’m really looking forward to working with Jo and Konrad in the near future … who needs walls?