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Informal Learning and Moodle


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Presentation at the Bradford Moodle Conference on Informal Learning and Moodle, derived from work by Terry Freedman and I for our "What are your kids learning when you're not looking" project.

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Informal Learning and Moodle

  1. 1. Informal Learning and Moodle Miles Berry January 2009
  2. 2. Miles Berry • Head at Alton Convent Prep • Former Becta ICT in Practice Award winner – Moodle – Elgg • BCS, Naace, Mirandanet, RSA etc. • • Blog: • Twit:
  3. 3. • Informal Learning • Literature Review • WAYKLWYNL • Case Studies • Implications • Moodle?
  4. 4. Informal Learning 4
  5. 5. Education “Our concept of an educated person is of someone who is capable of delighting in a variety of pursuits and projects for their own sake, and whose pursuit of them and general conduct of life are transformed by some degree of all round understanding.” R S Peters, 1972 5
  6. 6. 6
  7. 7. CC by-nc steve_cx 7
  8. 8. Literature Review
  9. 9. Growing up digital Don Tapscott, 1998 Contrast between N-Geners and Baby-boomers Contrast between TV and the Net The Net: •Active •Raises Intelligence •Democratic •Community building “Using the new technology is as natural as breathing”
  10. 10. The Digital Disconnect Levin & Arefah, 2002 A substantial disconnect between how students use the Internet for school and how they use the Internet during the school day Reasons: •Administrators •Variation in teaching policies •Uninspiring assignments Barriers •Quality of access •Filtering •Inequalities of home access
  11. 11. Pupils’ home use of computers Valentine, Marsh and Pattie, 2006 • High level of access • Educational opportunities outside school are beneficial • Children value the freedom they have at home • Extensive use of communication
  12. 12. Their Space Green and Hannon, DEMOS, 2007 • Building relationships • Creating content • Essential skills – Creativity – Communication – Collaboration • User types: – Digital pioneers – Creative producers – Everyday communicators – Information gatherers
  13. 13. Beyond Technology David Buckingham, 2007 The new digital divide: “Home uses were often extensive, diverse and open-ended, school often posed restrictions on students’ autonomous access and use”
  14. 14. Learners and Technology: 7-11 Cranmer, Potter, Selwyn, 2008 • “Use of computer games, digital cameras, and making pictures were all more prevalent in the home” • Relatively little creative or collaborative use of the net, either at school or home • Good awareness of e- safety issues
  15. 15. Safer Children in a Digital World Byron Review, 2008 • Opportunities for fun, learning and development • Generational digital divide and risk averse culture • Children are still developing critical skills • Empowering children to keep themselves safe
  16. 16. Digital Media and Learning Initiative MacArthur Foundation, 2008 • Generation gap in perceived value of online activity • Learning social and technical skills • Peer learning • Most aren’t making the most of the opportunities • Hanging Out • Messing Around • Geeking Out
  17. 17. What are your kids learning when you’re not looking?
  18. 18. What are you learning whilst your teachers aren’t looking… • • Live from 26th November to 18th December • Publicised via • online forums, • discussion lists, • blogs and • twitter • google docs spreadsheet form • Demographics • Access to tech • Use of Internet and computers at home • Filtering • Social networking in school • Comparison between school and home
  19. 19. 985 responses excluding duplicates and blanks
  20. 20. Access to Technology
  21. 21. Access to Technology
  22. 22. Use of the Internet
  23. 23. Use of the Internet
  24. 24. Use of computers
  25. 25. Use of computers
  26. 26. Give examples of things you have learnt using technology that are not related to school work. 26
  27. 27. Give examples of things you have learnt using technology that are not related to school work. • Girl, 16: You don't really learn much from these social sites. It is just an easy and fun way to communicate with your friends. • Boy, 16: I have learned how to do some simple programming using Basic and I have researched how to utilize the Macromedia Flash program to create basic flash documents. • Boy, 15: I have learned how to do some simple programming using Basic and I have researched how to utilize the Macromedia Flash program to create basic flash documents. • Boy, 14: I've taught my self some Python scripting and how to mod most of the games that I play. I've also learned to bypass nearly every filter/parental control my parents or school have placed on my computer. • Boy, 15: I have expanded my musical knowledge through YouTube video. I have also improved my instrumental skills through YouTube. • Girl, 13: how to personalise backgrounds, and how to download music • Boy, 15: I've taught myself to program in C++ and PHP through online technical documentation and tutorial sites like W3Schools. (I believe W3Schools is blocked at school.) Most of the home pages of FOSS projects are blocked as well. 27
  28. 28. Give examples of things you have learnt using technology that are not related to school work. • Boy, 8: you can talk to people in a different country on skype. • Boy, 11: Financing - from playing Football Manager every week Football - from Fantasy Football • Girl, 13: Watching BBC i-player nature programes because it doesn't work at school. • Girl, 15: I learnt how to power an i pod with an onion through Youtube! • Boy, 15: Av learned how to write flash games with actionscript. • Boy, 10: Making your own website and how to put on html snippets and embed codes • Boy, 11: Wikipedia lies (often) • Girl, 12: learnt words to songs. l learnt a tiny, tiny bit about brain/heart surgery • Boy, 10: How to make music, use iChat. Watching Videos and filming movies. Making websites (freewebs, iweb and justhost) Used to play DS • Boy, 12: Rune Scape is a game in where you have to be very social to complete • Boy, 16: The govournmental structure of the early Roman Republic. • Girl, 12: How to programme my laptop. 28
  29. 29. Writing (not school related)
  30. 30. Use of social networking
  31. 31. Use of computer games
  32. 32. What is your favourite thing you do with technology at home? 32
  33. 33. What is your favourite thing you do with technology at school? 33
  34. 34. Social networking at school?
  35. 35. Filtering
  36. 36. Which blocked websites do you think you should be able to access at school? 36
  37. 37. Enjoyment
  38. 38. What do teachers know?
  39. 39. How could ICT at school be more like at home? 39
  40. 40. How could ICT at school be more like at home? • Boy, 17: I believe that schools should take advantage of the ICT technologies that most students have at home to a greater extent. For instance they should use face book to keep students connected to each other and to the school such as teachers. Video games could also be used by schools to assist learning. Games can get kids interested in what they are learning, they also present the information in a more hands on way then a book alone. • Girl, 10: let us play games in our free time (at breaks etc...) • Girl, 10: they could install programs on moodle which are like games • Boy, 17: Yes. Allow students to learn on their own, don't set a plan for learning. Let students find websites and resources on their own and make it less of a chore to do assignments. • Boy, 16: I believe that my school should lower its restrictions on schools computer access, because the filter that blocks websites is a double-edged sword. I understand that my school blocks certain websites that may be distracting (eg. gaming websites), but some websites that could be utilized by myself and other students are blocked as well for no apparent reason. I would like my school to either lower the restrictions or use a different filter than can be configured much more easily than our current one. 40
  41. 41. Should ICT at school be more like at home? • Girl, 16: No because then people could use that to their advantage and go on websites that will distract them from their school work. • Boy, 15: No - Many students CAN'T TYPE ENGLISH (quot;uquot; DOES NOT EQUAL quot;youquot;) because of sites like Facebook and MySpace (plus these sites are horrible anyway), along with a lot of IM services. Gaming would not be usable in school unless it's something like Garry's Mod (a mod that allows players to experiment with the Source physics engine). • Boy,15: no because then we would mess around instead of learning. • Girl, 14: No, school is not home! • Boy, 10: They should not because at school we should be learning not playing games. • Girl, 13: no because you dont want to learn how to do different ICT skills at home - you use if for fun at home • Girl, 15: NO what they have at our school is a fantastic program 41
  42. 42. A few case studies…
  43. 43. Max, 7
  44. 44. Eleanor, 11 My mum taught me people`s email addreses but I taught myself how to  actually email. I just clicked most of the buttons until I found the  right one! I also taught myself a lot of diseses as I would love to be  a docter! For this I mostly used the internet. I once also worked out  how to use Google Earth. I`m not a very tecnical so this was a big  leap for me! I simply fiddeld around with the buttons picking the ones  that I thought would do the job and after just half an hour I found my  house! I don`t actuelly no why i kept at it- probably wanted to learn  something new as usual!
  45. 45. Ways to make The School Internet Experience(tm) more like The Home Internet Experience(tm): •Install Windows XP home on a Celeron 900mhz with 192mb of RAM •Network using wifi to the unecrypted wifi AP at the other end of the building •Get the least expensive quot;unlimitedquot; broadband package. (1GB/month is enough for anyone!) •Install 5 different p2p programs, 3 of them spyware loaded versions and set them to start on startup. •Install 30 day trials of several different antivirus packages but completely ignore them. •Install Windows Live Messenger (latest version) and MSN Plus (with the adware) •Install the version of Microsoft Works you got with the computer. save all documents in .wps •Make sure the only browser you have is IE 6.0 with 3 visible third party tool bars including smiley central and coolwebsearch. •Arrange the desktop so the default wallpaper has icons for programs and assorted forgotten files all over it. •Never empty the recycle bin •Install iTunes, buy some songs, transfer them to iPods(tm) but complain, confused to non-technical people when these songs don't work on phone mp3 players. •Buy a box of tissues for the poor guy who is called to fix it. He will need post-trauma 45 counselling. Tim Dobson
  46. 46. Ways to make The Home Internet Experience(tm) more like The School Internet Experience(tm): •Buy a a RM Branded Stone desktop with 8GB RAM and a 2.8 GHZ Pentium 4 loaded with Windows Vista [Ultimate] and MS Office [student version] 2007 for twice market price (even with Tesco vouchers) •Buy Windows XP Professional and Office 2003 from RM and install. •Leave the 'designed for Vista' sticker on. •Buy RM's Safetynet Content filtering system and install •Block anything useful. •Block anything fun. •Block anything that might possibly contain unverifiable facts. (blogs, forums). •Block anything that might use lots of bandwidth •Block anything that might allow people to communicate •Block anything you don't agree with •Forget to block foreign language websites •Whitelist all the popular advert providers and block the rest. •Whitelist a few file extensions to download from the internet and block the rest. •Block everything with the word 'free' in it •Block URLs containing a word, chosen randomly by week - this week it's quot;dragonquot; ?! •Block anything that might be offensive to everything from fleas to ants. •Fail to block web proxies through URL patterns and just block domains 46 Tim Dobson
  47. 47. Ways to make The School Internet Experience(tm) more like The Home Internet Experience(tm): •Block anything that isn't http traffic (including https) •Block school webmail for several days by accident (no one can email you to report the problem) •Ask RM to buy you the software they think your computers might need and install Adobe/Macromedia megasuite + Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition. •Remove most useful functionality from the start menu •Make all users sign an AUP which is hard to break if you are to do your job/complete your course. •Display full screen message if USB devices is inserted saying it should be removed instantly citing security concerns. •Remove computer access from anyone who attempts to outsmart you •Buy and Install remote desktop spying software (RM re-branded Cytrix product) •Install IE 7 •Refuse to install OpenOffice.Org or Firefox and cite quot;Security Concernsquot;. •Put out a few press releases exclaiming how much you have spent on IT facilities and thus infer you will get your best ever results next year and massively exaggerate what ICT means to you. 47 Tim Dobson
  48. 48. 48
  49. 49. Implications
  50. 50. Primary curriculum • Learning through play • Digital show and tell • Meeting children where they are, moving them on – From communication to collaboration – From consumers to creators • Rose Review: KS3 ICT by the end of KS2? • Office skills?
  51. 51. Secondary Curriculum • Blogging and writing • Citizenship • Providing opportunities • Accreditation and e-portfolios • Diploma and new curriculum • PLTS: – independent enquirers – creative thinkers – reflective learners – team workers – self-managers – effective participators
  52. 52. Digital divide • Phones! • Home access scheme – Broadband – Laptop with “relevant” software – Support for internet safety – filtering? – “embedding improved safety features” • Cultural divides
  53. 53. CPD • Net-Gen Teachers • Teachmeet • PLNs • EdTechRoundup • TES Forums • Filtering – Blogger, Twitter, YouTube etc.
  54. 54. Filtering: Mission Impossible?
  55. 55. Moodle 55
  56. 56. Themes 56
  57. 57. Messaging and Chat 57
  58. 58. Blogs 58
  59. 59. Sloodle 59
  60. 60. Students as Teachers 60
  61. 61. Extra curricular courses 61
  62. 62. Some other ideas... • Unstructured and semi- structured courses • The Common Room course • Games • The Media Filter • Modules: – Birthday – Gallery – Jabber – Moodle for Mobiles – Skype 62
  63. 63. Contact details...