I, Gutenberg

haulin netNothing like the nuclear family, huddled around the hearth on a February eve just prior to dinner. Except, my 12-year-old is on her laptop finishing a science project, my 13-year-old is on another computer working on her on-line class. My 15-year-old is on another computer filling out an application for a college study trip. I, Gutenberg, am blogging. No TVs are on.

No, the future certainly isn’t what it used to be.

David Warlick writes of School 2.0; I’m thinking it’s Kid 2.0—maybe Family 2.0. Will Richardson notes that Kids 2.0 (my term) are amid a revolution of putting a lot of their information on line for all to see; sometimes it’s TMI. Doug Johnson overviews the characteristics of Generation Next; today’s K-12 students are even younger than that. And Miguel Guhlin has been treating the The Way It Is v. The Way It Will Be.

The convergence point for these conversations is the Read/Write Web.

When Gutenberg invented the printing press, information flowed from those (church, state) who had access to the press. Today, everybody has the press and therefore ownership of self-expression broadly disseminated. This an exciting time and a time of great responsibility.

Schools have a responsibility to teach Kids 2.o how to use the Read/Write Web for far-reaching academic, professional, even business purposes—not just as an entertainment and communication portal.

So, my hat is off to the trailblazing Gutenbergs of Carteret County Schools who have experimented with the new media and / or have channeled positive blogging experiences to their students of today.

Writing, perhaps even publishing, on a daily or routine basis can help make one a more proficient, confident writer. That is one of our charges in public education.


2 Responses to I, Gutenberg

  1. vfritz says:

    Good evening, Senor Poletti,

    Your words are so true, so true. You have me hooked on blogging in just one short month. And you are exactly right. If we want kids to write, teach them about the Read/Write Web as you call it. What’s not to love?!!!

    I see it as being all about “connections”, which also happens to be the current hot topic in alternative education. In my circles we talk about “disconnected kids” and making connections with kids to help them REconnect to society. We discuss keeping them in school by teaching them to feel connected to their teachers and their peers.

    And now, before I “disconnect” my laptop and click out of my blog…I will give you a glimpse into my tiny nuclear family. Tonight I saw a new picture of my baby granddaughter on our “family groups” webpage…thank you YAHOO pages! Then I spoke for a few minutes with my son who lives in Taiwan. He and I kept our pages in English, but his girlfriend often switches to Chinese since it is easier for her to read. I forwarded a quick email to my daughter-in-law. Finally, my husband and I spent some quality time reading some of Mr. Butler’s students’ answers to one of his scientific ethics questions on the CHS Biology blog. We also took a few minutes to check out “Haulin Net” and now I am ready for unplugging for a while, but I do feel a bit stressed after reading David Warlick’s edublog…I realized I still don’t know what a “wiki” is!

    But no matter what I don’t know about the web…I am in a different lifestage from you, Joe…this is the greatest connection there has ever been for mankind. Your family, my family, your blog, my blog, OUR students have to be taught how to use this tool. So you keep “Haulin Net”. I think all of this is way cool!
    Vicki Fritz

  2. Actually, blogging may make us more facile writers, but not necessarily BETTER writers…unless one counts finding and growing comfortable with one’s voice THE SIGN of better writing.

    Is that crazy?

    Blogging is great because it connects us, but it’s still SO text-dominant. I feel like the characters in a movie I saw recently, The Sound of Thunder. The death of a butterfly during the Cretaceous Period of Earth by time travellers results in “time waves” that roll over the present in 2055. Each time shift results in vegetation, native life reasserting itself, a present where human beings never made it ecologically.

    As the power to communicate and collaborate increases, I fear that text-dominant humans will be either be transformed or be eaten by the new inhabitants. In this case, adapting to the present is difficult, if not impossible. Blogging is for the text-dominant, for the yesteryears, the has beens.

    What does the future hold for the majority of humanity that isn’t text dominated?

    (how’s that for fun? hehe…thanks for letting me explore that here).

    On a diff note, yeah, Vicki, this is awesome. I’ll be subscribing to your blogs to read what you’re writing!

    Miguel Guhlin
    Around the Corner-MGuhlin.net

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