Thursday, March 08, 2012

I Am Open Education.

Or I want to be.

It's Open Education Week this week, March 5-10. Ever since hearing Cathy Casserly at the Innovations Conference, I have been thinking and thinking about how to make my own teaching part of this movement, how, in general, to open my teaching up more. (here's a list of participants in OEW; here are a whole bunch of resources.)

I was looking at this Interactive and Non-Linear Narrative class, and also this Digital Poetry course (at MIT's OpenCourseWare site). Pretty good stuff.

Not very long ago, I saw this kind of thing as a threat--that the Community College Powers would decree that there would be one master course, and all of us would just be drones, administering the One Course. But I attended a session at the conference--a math session, believe it or not--and the guy, who's a dean but who teaches developmental math at 3 levels below college level, uses open materials that he has chosen (Khan Academy, videos by James Sousa, etc.), and then he can, as they say, drill down into the work of his students to find out where they're having troubles. As a teacher, then, he "flips" the class, making the initial "lecture" occur outside of class, where students use the open education resources to learn concepts and practice, and in class, he helps them with the concepts he knows, not guesses, are creating stumbling blocks. I am telling you, the people, this math class was inspiring.

I am--mark my words--going to become an open source teacher.

I posted this on Facebook, but it's worth posting again:


  1. This sounds inspiring and cool!

  2. This is cool. I don't quite get it, but it sounds cool. 'Open Source' always makes me think if Linux. Is that how I should think about it? Computer systems (brains? classes?) that get modulated and updated by the people, as in We the People?

  3. Damn communist . . .

  4. I am actually trying to figure out how to use khan academy in my classroom now. If I can get it to work it would be so cool.



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