📰 Read Write Respond #041

Cover for Read Write Respond #041
Welcome to another month of Read Write Respond, a newsletter of ideas and information associated with all things in and out of education, mined and curated for me and shared with you.

On the family front, my daughters continue to amaze me. Whether it be Ms. 8 and her rock climbing or Ms 3 sitting in her sister’s class during open morning. Also, I have been taking my ‘holidays’ on Friday’s – I don’t get school holidays anymore – to stay at home with the children. This is because my wife has gone back full-time based on a change of circumstances. I’m wondering, is that a ‘four-day week?‘ Or is parenting just another form of ‘working?’

At work, I have received another new title, however I continue to simply do the work that needs to be done. It was at least nice to receive some recognition from my team leader that I have been doing five different roles and that it was not ideal. What is interesting is that many of these roles are often assumed in schools or simply go unseen. It is a continual reminder of how technology is a system.

Personally, I have been listening to new music from Carly Rae Jepsen and The National. I also watched Mike Mills’ short film associated with The National’s album, as well as the Whitney Houston documentary. Like so many others, I too was left disappointed by the ending of Game of Thrones. I also saw the last instalment of the The Avengers series. I have been reading Ruined By Design as a part of the IndieWeb Book Club. Other than a few lengthy replies to Greg Miller and Cal Newport I have not written any longer reflections.


Here then are some links that have supported my learning this month …

Learning and Teaching

Oz Lit Teacher

Narissa Leung shares a new project which involves sharing possible mentor texts. The concern is that although educators like Pernille Ripp share various suggestions, using them can overlook the local context. Some other useful sites to support searching for books and resources include Kim Yeomans’ Wild About Books and Bianca Hewes’ Jimmy Reads Books.

Was Shakespeare a Woman?

Elizabeth Winkler explores the authorship behind the work of William Shakespeare. She puts forward the case for Emilia Bassano. This lengthy piece provides an insight into challenges associated with exploring the past and why history is always interpretative.

Let them play! Kids need freedom from play restrictions to develop

Brendon Hyndman highlights the benefits of ‘play’ in and out of school. One suggestion is providing children spaces with loose play equipment. This is something Narissa Leung, Adrian Camm and John Johnston have touched upon, through the use of objects, such as old bricks and crates. Sometimes the biggest challenge is getting out of the way.

Detractors from Afar

Greg Miller provides a reflection on the journey that you have started at St Luke’s. It fits with the idea of change through encouragement, rather than revolution. This is also a good reminder that teaching is not a research-based profession.

Bruce Pascoe teaches Australians about the rich Indigenous history of their country

The ABC has produced a new digibook with Bruce Pascoe to support students in learning about the history of Aboriginal agriculture and technology and celebrate the ingenuity of the First Australians. Pascoe is also releasing a children’s version of his award winning book Dark Emu. Another useful resource on the topic of including indigenous perspective in the classroom is the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Curricula Project.

Technology

The luxury of opting out of digital noise

Vicki Boykis reflects on the privilege associated with being able to unplug. This continues on from an earlier post on fixing the internet. Like Boykis, I wonder about the relief and ostracism associated with leaving the social web. This reminds me of Venkatesh Rao’s pushback on Waldenponding. It is interesting reading this alongside Cal Newport’s recent post on the IndieWeb as the solution to social media’s ills. I wonder if one strategy is managing your feeds through a form of social media jujitsu or simply writing the web we want as captured by the #ProSocialWeb movement.

It’s Time to Break Up Facebook

As a part of the New York Times series on privacy, Chris Hughes puts forward the case for Facebook to be split up and regulated. He recounts his experience during the early days and the problem that the platform has in regards to the question, “how big is big enough?” Hughes discusses the spectre of antitrust that haunts the major platforms. In a separate piece, Adi Robertson argues that we need to do more than create guidelines in order to fix Facebook. There has also been some criticism the wider privacy series.

Learning from Surveillance Capitalism

Ben Williamson discusses the implication of Shoshana Zuboff’s The Age of Surveillance Capitalism on education. He suggests three possible inquires stemming from the book: cultures of computational learning, human-machine learning confluences and programmable policies.

Introducing SIFT, a Four Moves Acronym

Mike Caulfield continues his development of the ‘Four Moves‘ associated with fake news and web literacy. He has introduced an acronym that can be used to remember the moves: SIFT.

  • (S)TOP
  • (I)nvestigate the Source
  • (F)ind better coverage
  • (T)race claims, quotes, and media back to the original context

Caulfield sums up this change as “Don’t CRAAP, SIFT.”

Newsletter Development

Warren Ellis shares a series reflecting on the development of his newsletter. He touches on the technology that allows him to produce a small magazine that connects a community of minds. This is interesting reading alongside other posts from Craig Mod, Paul Jun and Simon Owens.

Reflections

Low marks for performance reviews

Chris Woolston dives into the problematic world of performance reviews. He speaks with a number of experts in the area, including Herman Aguinis, who explain that the process is in many respects broken. The answer is not to remove reviews, by instead make them more regular, therefore making the feedback more meaningful. This is another post which captures some of the problems with feedback and the challenges of self-determined learning in a world ruled by numbers. It is also interesting to read it alongside Andrea Stringer’s reflection on the problem with killing two birds with one stone. It also touches on the problem of grades too.

Conquering Mount Everest: High hopes and broken dreams

Inga Ting, Alex Palmer, Stephen Hutcheon and Siobhan Heanue provide an insight into what is involved in climbing Mount Everest. They discuss the route, what is involved, the statistics of fatalities on the mountain, the changes over time and the small window of opportunity available each year. Interestingly, Everest is actually considered a lot safer than some of the other mountains in the Himalayas. This makes me want to re-watch Everest to make sense of what happened and where.

‘Just add water’: Lake Eyre is filling in a way not seen for 45 years

Dominique Schwartz reports on the water filling Lake Eyre. What is unique about this is that it is all just nature. Although locals fought an attempt in 1995 to introduce large-scale irrigated cotton farming on the Cooper, there has not been any other attempts. It makes me wonder about rewilding and letting things take their cause, rather than store excess flows as Gina Rinehart is pushing to do.

Turning Points in my Understanding of Virtually Connecting

Maha Bali samples some of the points in the journey associated with VConnecting. This included the beginnings, the way it has changed, some of the positives shared, some of the negatives and when things sometimes fail. This is interesting reading, both in regards to the reflective nature of the post, as well as appreciating how VConnecting has evolved. Ian O’Byrne and Naomi Barnes provide some other posts involving auto-ethnography.

First You Make the Maps

Elizabeth Della Zazzera documents the developments in mapping that made long sea voyages possible. It is easy to pick up a modern map and assume that this is the way it always was, even worse to open up Google Maps in the browser. Della Zazzera breaks down the various developments, providing examples to support her discussions.


Read Write Respond #041

So that is May for me, how about you? As always, happy to hear.
Bryan Mathers' sketch
Cover Image via JustLego101

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