Less Data, More Freire.
Seek, Make Sense of, and Share with Alison McDowell
I love the “responsive activity” (as my buddy @dogtrax calls it) of digital annotation, but I have a big concern with the kinds of writing others choose for us to mark up. It seems to be dominated by the cold fish jargon of ‘aca-speak’. These chosen texts gives me only an abstraction of feeling, hollowed out and brittle. I prefer to engage with plain writing, plain feeling, and plain doing instead of being distanced from feeling. Speaking of…
I would love to have a conversation with anyone who is interested in a future of learning that is not all about “data-mining, human resourcing, and social impact investment opportunities.” Or as Alison McDowell puts it: education for liberation, less data, more Freire.
I especially direct her work to Daniel Bassill because of all the work he does with maps and mapping as well as Kevin Hodgson with his recent twitter viz. McDowell uses a visualization tool called “Oligrapher”. This mapping tech is part of an organization called LittleSis.
LittleSis is offering a Zoom Training for January 7, 2020 for those interested in an introduction to Oligrapher. Sign up, become a member, and then sign up for the online training. I hope Dan and Kevin can join me to keep me honest, but I would love to meet other interested parties there as well. I am going to use this tool to do some investigative work on my campus and in my department about corporate connections here (read Blackboard, Zoom, and more). Might want to use this tool to look at the money pit that is my local Congressperson, Brett Guthrie. He needeth a paddling in the public stocks. Might also want to look at all the corporate and foundation connections that the NWP has embraced in recent years for funding projects
This flurry of activity is due entirely to my discovery of the work of concerned parent/citizen Alison McDowell. It is an understatement to say that her blog, Wrench in the Gears: A Skeptical Parent’s Thoughts on Digital Curriculum, is a revelation.
She is spreading the word face-to-face as well as on YouTube. I have been listening to and watching one long, but super-fruitful video she gave in Kent, Washington. I have taken that video and embedded it into Vialogues, a tool for annotating videos. You can lurk and view the annotations, but you can also join Vialogues for free (it’s part of Columbia University) and pile onto the annotations. I have embedded the Vialogue of McDowell’s talk below. I think this is profound stuff and critically important for learning, especially learning that is ‘unbought’ by corporations.