Who would have thought that Michael Wesch would turn my thoughts to pwning video from youtube? Last Thursday I had the opportunity to hear Michael Wesch speak at the OLA Superconference in Toronto. I was absolutely thrilled to have this opportunity having viewed many of his talks on youtube, as well as accessed his videos for professional learning for myself and to share with others.
What I found myself wondering was how many folks in this audience of approximately 1,000 people who work in libraries in a variety of roles, truly understood the ideas he was presenting and the impact upon the work they do now and forever? He asked this group to move beyond information literacy and really they are still grappling with the idea of information literacy in the 21st Century!
Really, he is on the cutting edge of exploration these days in a realm that most folks know exists but don’t truly understand. Heck National Geographic has named him an Emerging Explorer! He stated right at the beginning of his talk that we need literacy in new media to learn to change our assumptions about learning. This reminded me of the statements that Trung Le made in the panel discussion at Educon last weekend, where he indicated that we have to change the language that we use to talk about education in order to change the thoughts and conversations we have about learning and education. These two gentlemen are definitely thought leaders in the field of learning, yet are not necessarily trained educators, makes me think.
I guess my takeaway from all of this great learning is that learning must be about passion based work, learners must create information about their interests and that learners today need to consume information so that information finds them by the creation of learning networks that feed this interest and passion. So how many educators at all levels of education are embracing these ideas? How many educators understand the importance of the learning network and the read/write web? These ideas are’nt new to me but I think they were to about one half of the room on Thursday. I know that I would love to learn in Mike Wesch’s classroom and I’m sure my own children would too…how do we make this the norm in education?
pwn McLuhan & Woody Allen