Random Thoughts

K12online Shanghai LAN party podcast #5

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It just keeps getting more interesting. This podcast is around the conversation that Ewan McIntosh started in his Keynote. I think this is our best conversation to date, because people are starting to feel more comfortable around the mic and the power of blogging/podcasting. We talk a lot about fear. Fear of blogging, fear of opening yourself up to a public audience, yet here is a group that one week ago I had to basically force to podcast. Now 5 podcasts later, three people took notes while listening to Ewan of things they wanted to say. No sooner did I turn Ewan off at the end of his keynote that people wanted me to press record. They did not need a prompt and that fear, fear of hearing their own voice, fear of ‘putting themselves out there’, fear of saying the wrong thing, is slowly leaving.

There is great professional power in this social network and it’s great watching my colleagues change around me as they learn more about what all this has to offer. It’s 35 minutes, but I think you will find it very engaging.


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I started blogging in 2005 and found it such a powerful way to reflect and share my thinking about technology, this generation, and how we prepare students for their future not our past.


  1. These conversations are outstanding and I really am impressed with your total honesty and your willingness to share your thoughts, ideas and your fears. I still have many of those fears to this day but I can tell you that the rewards for myself personally and professionally make me push those fears to the side. You all have captured some conversations that will be so meaningful to others. Yes Jeff, as you say there is great professional power in this social network and you know I think we are just at the threshold of the power to come. I am so thankful to be a part of this community. I so hope all of you will keep your voices in the mix. We need them.

  2. Thanks for the delayed conversation – it’s of an exceptional quality, of course, and I’m going to need a day or two probably to reply and give it justice 😉 I only wish I could be in Shanghai instead of a very cold London (tonight).

    A couple of immediate thoughts:
    * If people don’t want to pay attention, they don’t have to
    An interesting thought, but why do they sometimes choose to ‘pick a fight’? (see: http://halfanhour.blogspot.com/2006/10/more-for-record_29.html ; http://halfanhour.blogspot.com/2006/10/selling-idea.html ; http://www.downes.ca/cgi-bin/page.cgi?post=36106&format=full ; http://thethinkingstick.com/?p=348)
    I can feel your frustration about the ‘bashing’ kind of comments. But when that person’s views are taken as gospel by others what’s the next stage? Empathising with kids is great, but what’s the solution?

    * Resumes/CVs: sometimes I think this helps explain the history beyond the first post of a blog. Where did this person come from? Why did an idea that worked for them not work for me, or vice versa?

    * ‘Good’ teachers: We do need to make up our own minds about someone’s competence by seeing others teach, but this is quite rare in the F2F world. Online, regular interaction on a blog might help you see if someone is a good teacher but, like someone else said, they might just talk a good game. Do we trust people’s reputations more online or F2F?

    * Blogging and learning styles: blogging is becoming a phrase to describe one-click publishing. We can cater for all talents and learning styles by publishing the visual, audio, movement, words of the learners we have. If it can be captured, it’s the audience and collaboration that takes place online that is valuable IMO.

    Glad that my keynote, over which I was not too confident, was able to stimulate some thought – for me at least 😉

  3. Pingback: EduBlog Insights » Blog Archive » A few thoughts about the K12 Online Conference 2006….

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