Wednesday, July 24, 2013

July 23 BLC13

This morning I was privileged to be in a session with Dr. Eric Mazur of Harvard University. Aside from being an international superstar in the world of physics, Dr. Mazur is also a superstar of pedagogy for his rigorous work with what is now called the flipped classroom. He originally called it "inverting the sequence," for the trivia buffs. There was much to dissect in what he said and I have some things to read over, but I want to get a few nuggets down here now.

  • Mazur quoting Camus, "Some people talk in their sleep. Lecturers talk while other people are sleeping."
  • Most uses of technology in schools are like old wine in new skins.
  • The design of a traditional physical classroom space is based upon the Greek amphitheatre which was designed for entertainment not learning.
  • Have you ever heard a student say, "Teacher, please be quiet. I need time to think?"
Lots of other meaty information from Mazur, but I need time to read it over and think.

I spent my afternoon with the gregarious Alan November. I love the way he thinks aloud while he's teaching. I also really appreciate how willing he is to entertain questions, even those that seem tangential.

As I listened to Alan, the effort/impact matrix that Ewan McIntosh and Tom Barrett reminded me of during yesterday's session. It would be interesting to examine various technology initiatives in schools in terms of where they might fall on this matrix.

Trying to keep this short tonight. Three more learning-packed days ahead!


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