eGyankendra Telecenter for Emergence Strategy:Prepared by Jan Herder, 2010 for eGyanKendra Learning Center(Initiative of SEWAA) Dalanwala, Dehradun, IndiaOVERVIEWVision: The community is the curriculum. The whole systems of the biomewhich support the sustainability of the community are the curriculum.Methodology: By leveraging a student empowerment, productivity centeredservice learning model, using design science and creative economypractices along with the use of web 2.0 and ICT, students engage anddevelop a comprehension of their unique biome and its sustainability andits relationship to others locally and globally.Funding model (start up): A pool of stakeholders of Corporate SociallyResponsible investors provide seed money. In return they have access and1st rights of refusal for an appropriate percentage of ʻproductsʼ and humancapital which emerge.Facility: A 100% ecological and sustainable facility, that is the livinglaboratory of the curriculum and embodiment of the practice of themethodology.Major components:State of the Planet Community Collaboratory--Inventories of each biomes resources, aggregated in a knowledge base/wiki--Data streams, multimedia of quantitative and qualitative information--Web 2.0 sharing, including web cams, vlogs, blogs, photos, etc.--Renewable energy lab and monitor
Synthesis of SEWAA proven programs (to be more fully described)Where to begin:--Engage two different schools/telecenters with broadband connection onthe ning--Determine a class and instructor from each, wiling to participate to beginsharing and comparing and developing learning activities.Synthesizing Sustainability, Web 2.0 and Immersive Pedagogy in theTelecenter for EmergenceThe biome of the community is the curriculum (including environmental,social, political and cultural). In the eGyankendra Telecenter, the verysystems that support the Center are them selves the subject of an eco-literacy. The methodology for delivering full capacity transfer of 21 CenturyLearning Skills is a technique of challenge based, productivity centeredimmersive learning. Aggregated and networked in commonly accessiblesocial networking platforms, an emergent opportunity is readily accessible.The question is: how do you teach it?For example, we could begin by:Using Google Earth and Sketch-Up the students design and create theirpresence on the web. They learn the basic program by putting their school/telecenter on Google Earth. A web cam at each Center is available forsharing and contrasting. They contribute their photos, videos and podcastsdescribing themselves, their community and its characteristics. Communityobservatories are created which monitor the health and status of the area.Digital stories are created and document the histories and lives, theconcerns and projects, challenges and environment. This provides abaseline and the beginning of a local knowledge base. Community radiohighlights the sounds and lessons that are learned and which emerge. TheICT Centers web site permits asynchronous learning and access to the
knowledge base. The ICT Centers are networked, global and regionaldifferences and similarities are compared. A strong sense of place, on theplanet and in the biome are created.1. Energy: renewable energy sources are utilized to create independenceand power for the people. Solar arrays exceed the facilities needs toprovide battery charging for locals.2. Water: Cisterns collect rainwater from the roof, simple filters providepotable water for cleanliness, consumption and facility greenhouse needs.The systems are designed and maintained by the students.3. Waste: Waste to power alternatives are studied and designed by thestudents. Grey water is used for the living machine and agriculturalexperiments. Black water is digested for other agricultural entrepreneurialprojects such as growing orchids and herbs, or for gasification.4. Nutrition. The living machine enhances the local areas ability to grownutritious food. Nutrition is studied and needed supplements areincorporated into the living machine, including aquaculture. The studentsand community benefits directly from their production.5. Health. Along with nutrition basic human health information is availableand integrated into the curriculum and broadcast. Solar refrigeration isutilized for storing vaccines.6. Society. Policy, laws and customs are enhanced by web 2.0 tools--especially creativity in the arts. Stories, dance, music, crafts, writing andjournalism are preserved and aggregated. The community of the facility isused as a collaboratory to manage itself, as a living example ofgovernance.7. Environment. In the shift from exploiter to stewards of the land,sustainability is created in awareness of the uniqueness of each locale,using eco-relevant industry and agriculture. Both community observatory
and class laboratory, the Center and its eco-machine’s can test bestpractices for local adoption and see immediate results.Economy. In a shift to more lateral economy, local control of local resourcesbecomes the wealth and the most important asset. In the paradigm shift tothe information or knowledge economy, local tourism deepens theknowledge base and experience of the trip. This is reflected in Web 2.0tools, evolved and aggregated from the ICT Center. Every aspect of theCenter can have an entrepreneurial component, connected to electroniccurrency. I evolved a teaching style and method that uses peer to peer and situatedlearning to empower students to develop their creativity and conﬁdence.By using a hands-on experiential and immerse approach I discovered myrole as a teacher was to facilitate these studentʼs access to learning in ahighly technological environment. The result was a transformed learningcommunity, one of inclusiveness, exposure and respect to diversity andownership by the students. The students experienced tremendouspersonal growth, creative expression and leadership skills. In my approachstudents take responsibility for every aspect of operating and managing thetelecenter: the systems that sustain the learning community--its food,power, waste, governance, technology, economy, and curriculum--aʻCreative Centerʼ could transform the members and wealth of thecommunity, especially the young.Applying Sustainability, Eco-Literacy and Cultural Creative Economyideas to the CTC.Technology and Philosophy
Access to Information and mastery of information technology is thefoundation of the CTC. To be relevant and useful this information mustaddress critical problems facing the community. The technology has to beapplied to the problems and challenges of the community. The pedagogy Iwould suggest is called Productivity Centered Experiential Learning and itis based on constructivist educational philosophy. Technology would beapplied across the CTCʼs curriculum to build 21st Century Learning Skills,student ownership and leadership, sustainability and economic prosperity.The guiding principle would be that the systems that support the Center--energy, water, waste, food, technology, the local biome (includes cultural,civic, economic, and ecological systems)--are themselves the subject of thecurriculum, and are mastered by the students.I believe it is important to reconsider some of the design features of CTCʼs.For example, this would consist of cistern water systems, a renewableenergy source, a teaching kitchen and cafe, an eco-machine for bio-remediation of waste--both grey and black water, and if possible, a largerinterior space. These are relatively minor adjustments and could be easilyincorporated into existing CTCʼs and with minor design changes for newones.--all roofs should drain rain water into a cistern easily ﬁltered to provideample potable water for the center.--A central area for a gallery space with natural light and trafﬁc. Studentart and display of projects and pictures of students and other memberswould really help the local residents take ownership. Sculpture placedaround the building would add external indications of the excitement andcreativity going on inside.--toilets could either be solar composting or ﬂushed with used grey waterand used for scientiﬁc purposes in the eco machine.
--water, power and waste management should all be separate, sustainableand independent of the municipality when possible--the size of the solar array should be increased to have excess power,both for use in the CTC and for charging batteries. This idea, pioneeredrecently by Ashram of Germany, in Africa, brings light and renewable powerto rural areas, allowing residents to study at night and power theirelectronic devices cheaply.--Stage Area. It should have a location for a projector and screen.Reverse projection with the screen located at the edge of the buildingwould permit access through the door during use. It should also have a portfor internet access or wireless for presentations, etc. An awning should beincluded to protect from rain and sun for the audience, preferably made ofbamboo grown locally. A large, open area for a variety of creative activities,events, performances, presentations, etc. is a crucial element.--The Radio station. The inclusion of the radio station is a criticalcomponent. The radio show hosts should also be students, not onlymembers of the staff. Youth Radio, coupled with use of iPodʼs constitute atremendous media audience with important pre-professional skill trainingfor students. Radios are charged at the CTC from extra power from thesolar array for a slight fee. Journalism skills enhance 21st Century LifeSkills such as literacy, reﬂective thinking, verbal expression, computertechnology and conﬂict resolution. Locally produced music, as well as liveperformances are regularly broadcast.--Media. There should be opportunities for student creation of media:audio, video, digital cameras, iPodʼs, etc. and their work displayedprominently. Teen TV, developed though the use of YouTube and iPodsshould be established in each CTC. This gives authentic youth voice,develops many complex skill sets and pre-professional career options. In
the process programming and issues relevant to the young and theircommunity have a place to be aired.--Cyber Cafe. Nutrition is essential to develop human capacity. Havingmeals at the CTC would be one place where young people can beguaranteed a good nutritious meal. Integrated into the curriculum, andusing the eco machine, interesting and nutritional meals can be made andtaught to local people. The cafe is wireless to encourage internet use fromthe community, it hosts events and special meals to help subsidize it, and itis the social center of the CTC during appropriate hours. A local cookbookcan be developed with contributions from traditional foods and women whoshowcase their speciality. These recipes can be aggregated into acookbook and sold to support the cafe, both locally and on the internet.Chef and barista training can provide concrete career skills to the young.The cafe is a productivity centered learning application, used by manycomponents of the CTC--from management, to economics, to hostingGallery exhibits, to featuring celebrity chefs, to developing exotic recipesfrom the eco machine, or local staples re-imagined.--Visiting artists, performers, celebrities, professionals, and performancegroups from other CTCʼs should be weekly public events. Exposure to rolemodels and ʻherosʼ build excitement, expose students to excellence, andpermit them to experience diversity. Allowing the CTC to be a resource forvisiting experts and exhibits draws attention, provides diversity and raisesthe legitimacy and sophistication of the community. Events are recorded,added to the community knowledge base wiki and made available for futureuse. Scheduling, managing, recording, producing and advertising theevents provides excellent productivity centered hands on experienceallowing students to develop their skills and interact with extraordinaryindividuals. It honors local people presenting their stories and skills. Avariety of ICT skills are used in the process. Students are empowered byhosting these events. Using web 2.0 tools international and regionalattention is drawn to the CTC, raising its visibility and introducing new
contacts to the community. CTC to CTC tours and exchanges through theuse of radio, web cams, blogs and pod casts facilitate the networkingaspect of CTCʼs and create healthy competition.--The Gallery. There should be a central space in the CTC for a gallery.Managed aggressively and integrated into the community and curricularareas of the CTC, it can be a galvanizing and dynamic addition. Withfrequent turn over and ever changing exhibits it draws from a wide diversityof community members. Touring exhibits created by other CTCʼs would bea regular feature. Exhibits would be recorded and added to the knowledgebase of the CTC, archived and accessible in the CTCʼs library and on itsweb site. Pictures of the students, staff and visitors along with evolvingdocumentation of their digital stories would create ownership, pride andvisibility for initiatives. Coupled with student produced videos and foodtreats created by the cyber cafe, large numbers of the community wouldvisit.Teen TV-- Let me use it as an example of productivity centered learning within acreative technological center. Basic digital video cameras are used,nothing fancy.--A brainstorming session is held by the Collaboratory Class with studentsinterested in the project.--A number of program ideas are presented and judged based on criteriadecided by the group. A pilot is chosen.--The Production teams are formed with: director, producers, writers,actors, ﬁlm crew, technical support.--Students research their roles and responsibilities on the internet.--The Management Class develops a schedule, requirements and budget--The weekly or monthly show is shot on the CTC stage and on locationseasily accessible. The community is invited to watch.--Critical reﬂection sessions are held following each production to improvethe awareness of the students and the quality of the project.
--There are visits from ﬁlm and TV professionals; perhaps a visit to a studiofor the CTC students.--Weekly screenings are held at the CTC as part of their events schedule.--The Media Students begin to document the process of the creation--fromthe ﬁrst brainstorming meeting through the completion of the project.Students and leaders are showcased, given little features on the radio,video, pictures and biographies in the paper--or featured in the Gallery.--On the ning, with individual Groups set up for each CTC, all of the mediais presented: in blogs from the students and teachers, discussions, inphotos, in video on YouTube, and on sites like: Global Youth ActionNetwork and TakingITGlobal, etc. All of the sites are linked: every site fromGoogle Earth --YouTube videos, to each blog and individual picture of theproject-- to optimize networking.--A Digital Story is made by all the participants of the process and archivedin a community knowledge base--a community wiki of best practices and itsculture. Each student includes it in their eportfolio for life long learning--essentially a personal web site. The artifacts of these stories would beaccessible in the libraries, injecting new meaning and life to the local CTClibrary.Let us follow this example into its use a part of a creative economystrategy. This involves scaling it up, regionally, nationally and ﬁnallyinternationally. The use of contests by are enhanced through viral web 2.0tools. The network of CTCʼs provides a built in mechanism to scale up acontest. Each CTC would send their best projects and designs.eGyankendra.org, --or to begin our ning--the administrative hub of theCTCʼs, identiﬁes various contest categories and has modest fundsavailable for local CTCʼs through investments from CRS.Various projects and categories are submitted to a central committee.Communication and management is achieved through video conferencingand other electronic mediums, minimizing travel and expenses. Incubatedand innovative projects, designs and products, collected from all the CTCʼs,
are aggregated and presented for showcase each year. They could beorganized by theme, such as video, or recipes, or art forms, etc.The yearly ʻFestival of Innovationʼ would be widely publicized through theinternet. The winning projects from each CTC would be invited toparticipate. Businesses, investors and recruiters would be invited toadjudicate and experience the latest cultural ʻproductsʼ aggregated from allof the CTCʼs from around the DR. The National Theater--or some suchvenue-- would be reserved for previews, performances and exhibits.International guests would be invited. Prizes such as scholarships, joboffers, commissions, start-up loans, etc., would be distributed andshowcased. Individual digital stories, prepared by students from the CTCʼswould be featured. Best practices would be aggregated into a wikiavailable to everyone, but especially the leaders of each CTC. The weeklong ʻFestival of Cultural Innovationʼ would be huge boost to economicactivity in the city. More importantly it would honor the work of the studentsand create excitement for learning.