Saturday, May 11, 2013

Out of Touch

Two weekends ago, I was watching an interview with Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen. I found the most interesting portion of the discussion about cyber-warfare. One rhetorical question they advanced during the interview was, At what point of cyber-warfare does the destruction become significant enough to warrant actual warfare?

Twenty minutes later, I was breaking up a full-on, head-lock brawl between my six-year-old and my ten-year-old because the former destroyed the latter’s much-loved architectural tower he had build in a shared Minecraft world.

It seems to me that any online interaction that stirs strong emotion (such as anger or love or inspiration or trust) always leads back to face-to-face interaction. It also seems that the more significant the problem to be solved, the more likely people will meet face-to-face in solving the problem. What implications does this have for education?

At what point are problems that we are trying to solve in education significant enough to warrant face-to-face interaction? At what point is the innovation exciting enough to warrant a face-to-face workshop or summit? At what point is a student's remedial-need significant enough to warrant face-to-face time?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Power of the "Node"

Source: Gapinvoid
It's interesting to explore an instructional leader's motivation to engage other leaders with digital-age tools. We indeed build collegial friendships because of the mutual experiences we share, common interests we have, and interesting information we seek. We've been networking in a face-to-face platform environment for decades, but now we have tools to extend our networking platform.These tools can help us convene to process complex ideas, solve problems, console each other in difficult situations, and share fresh and fascinating information. But, these tools only help us if we engage reciprocally by not only lurking but tweeting/discussing/sharing, by not only reading but blogging/commenting/curating.

The power of this network does not come from extracting the energy off of the grid, but when the nodes of the network generate energy by actively engaging. We all need to put more energy on to the grid than we take off of the grid. Pragmatically speaking, how do school leaders do this?

We dialogue, vent, analyze, relate, change your mind, connect, collaborate, advocate, and criticize. We bookmark, share, categorize, and retweet. We reflect, blog, generate ideas, and apply concepts. In a word, we are active.

What kind of "node" are you?