This Week in ODL: July 31-Aug 4, 2017

Digital Pedagogy Lab Institute

Next week, our weekly series This Week in ODL will be taking a week off due to the Digital Pedagogy Lab Institute (DPLI) which will be attended by the ODL. The DPLI is a five-day conference held in Fredericksburg, Virginia, that explores the role and application of digital technology in teaching. The 2017 institute will have four tracks, offering intensive peer-driven learning with and discussion of networked learning, new media, and critical digital pedagogy.

The ODL’s Amy Collier and the DLC’s Amy Slay will be leading a track on Critical Instructional Design which will explore how design intersects with the praxis of Critical Digital Pedagogy. The ODL’s Sean Michael Morris will be leading an introductory track with Jesse Stommel and Chris Friend on Critical Digital Pedagogy which will focus on teaching philosophies, discernment practices for using digital tools in courses, emergent learning, digital composition, and discussions of the impact of the digital on traditional and critical pedagogies. The ODL’s Sonja Burrows will attend the Institute as a participant.

New Site for Bread Loaf Next Gen Leadership Network: Food and Sustainability Studies

The ODL is currently developing a new site shell for a Social Action Team (SAT) functioning as part of the Bread Loaf Next Generation Leadership Network. The SAT is located in Fern Creek High School in Louisville, Kentucky. In an effort to broaden the Food Literacy program, several teachers in the district are developing a Food and Sustainability Studies program which will engage students in project-based learning about Food Literacy, Urban Agriculture, and Sustainability on campus and in the community.

The Bread Loaf Next Generation Leadership Network is a community of teachers and their students associated with the Bread Loaf Teachers’ Network (BLTN). The network was expanded and deepened through grants from the DeWitt Wallace Fund, which included teachers and rural areas in the South, including South Carolina, Mississippi, Georgia, and Kentucky, but also in rural areas in Vermont and the Southwest,  including communities from the Navajo Nation, which is located in Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and parts of Colorado, as well as Native Alaskan communities.

The role of the ODL with the Next Generation Leadership Network has been to partner with the BLTN in developing a digital community hub site for participating Social Action Teams, where students and teachers have space to blog, connect, communicate, and form a vibrant and supportive digital community.

Blog Post by Sean Michael Morris: Discussing Discussions

This week, the ODL’s Sean Michael Morris published a blog post entitled “Discussing Discussions” in which he compiled some of his thoughts after working with a group of instructors in an online environment. The subject for his discussion with these teachers was “the discussion forum,” especially as it relates to how discussion is handled inside a learning management system like Canvas, Middlebury’s LMS.

Sean writes, “To accomplish more with discussion requires that we let go of our need to monitor students’ study habits. This means confronting our learned (and in some cases, natural) desire to ‘helicopter parent’ learners in our classrooms. This confrontation doesn’t just need to happen online, either, it is a temptation for all teachers. Most of us received teaching that involved heavy monitoring—even graded lessons on how to study, for example in writing classrooms when each stage of a research project, from ideation to bibliography to draft, is graded as though each step was itself a thing.”

We invite you to read this post in it’s entirety here.

Office of Digital Learning

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