[IAEP] [support-gang] Journal prompts (was: Re: FW: [OLPC Bolivia] No logro aprender Sugar / I cannot learn Sugar)
mokurai at earthtreasury.org
mokurai at earthtreasury.org
Thu Jun 16 22:21:53 EDT 2011
On Thu, June 16, 2011 8:17 am, Walter Bender wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 16, 2011 at 3:51 AM, Kevin Mark <kevin.mark at verizon.net>
>> On Wed, Jun 15, 2011 at 08:16:23PM -0400, Walter Bender wrote:
>>> > So what we seem to be left with at this point is a system which tries
>>> > force users to add comments or tags even though there is very little
>>> > incentive or supportive mechanisms to actually do much with that
The first use of titling Journal entries is to be able to search for
important work. Have you tested the search functions in the Journal
toolbar? They are not Google, or even Google Mail, but they are fairly
effective. They search not only titles, but also tags and comments, a fact
not immediately obvious to the user who does not click every button and
pull every lever.
>>> One of my favorite examples of using a computer is school is a 1-to-1
>>> program at a middle school in Dorchester, MA. The kids spend five
>>> minutes writing at the end of *every* class, including gym. Even if
>>> they never use "that metadata", the act of reflecting is important.
Excellent. Essential for discovery learning.
Every serious explorer, scientist, and other discoverer keeps a journal or
log of everything significant, whether or not it seems to be important at
the time. These documents are frequently invaluable to their authors and
to later workers. When you are chasing an idea, you need to record every
twist and turn in the paths you try, even those that seem to be dead ends.
It often happens that an exploration that fails to answer one question or
reach one particular goal becomes important to some other. It is important
in every possible subject, including gym, where one should record one's
progress in training and note areas to investigate for further
One of the best places to grasp the value of such notes is in Leonardo da
Vinci's notebooks. It is not that we can all aspire to either the quantity
or quality of his discoveries and inventions, but that he shows us so well
how it can work, five centuries later, to inspire further discoveries.
Kepler's detailed account of his twenty years wrestling with the orbit of
Mars is another excellent example, though not as immediately accessible.
(De Motibus Stellae Martis, The Motions of the Star Mars, in Astronomia
Nova, The New Astronomy).
>>> We do have some tools/supportive mechanisms for using that metadata,
>>> including the Portfolio activity. Have you tried it?
>> As someone who is not versed in educational theory, I have tried to
>> what intentions where put into Sugar. I have herd mention of
>> Constructionism and
>> Constructivism and reflection. I could imagine writing after doing
>> something as
>> a way to gain more from any activity, so that sounds like something any
>> deployment should do, but I dont know the total picture of what was
>> And I dont know about what is or was done to convey these idea of
>> the journal, the writing and collaboration as part of an ecosystem to
>> deployment educators. If this is being done, I'd like to learn about it
>> and if
>> not, then what did I miss about what is told to deployments?
> The Sugar design was informed by educational theory and lots of
> experience on the ground in numerous pilot programs conducted in
> places as far ranging as an inner-city school in the US to a one-room
> school in the hill-country of Thailand. That said, the reality of
> Sugar deployments is that they are largely determined by the local
> teams, which vary from top-down ministry-of-education initiatives to
> bottom-up grass-roots efforts by an NGO to the initiative of an
> individual classroom teacher. So there is not one voice or message.
> What we try to do with Sugar is to skew the odds that certain (good)
> things would happen, regardless of the details of the deployment. (In
> a similar vain, the 5 principles of OLPC are meant to skew the odds
> that a 1-to-1 deployment will have maximum impact.) But we cannot and
> don't want to force these ideas on deployments; rather we want them to
> be appropriated and transformed locally as fit the needs -- a tough
> balance to achieve. More and better documentation is certainly in
> order. Even better would be real examples of best practice from the
> deployments themselves.
Hence Replacing Textbooks, for students, teachers, parents...
> One of main ideas behind the Journal is to give the learner a place to
> reflect on their work -- providing a consistent forum for that
> reflection. We also envision that the Journal will be used as part of
> the assessment process as entries can be incorporated into a
> collection of artifacts that the learner can periodically amass and
> present. (There is some good literature on portfolio assessment,
> including Stefanakis Evangeline's book --
> http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news/features/mi08012002.html -- which I
> find a nice balance between theory and practice.)
> Not every deployment has leveraged this aspect of Sugar yet, but as we
> continue to improve the underlying tools, I think we'll see more use.
> (By chance, when I was visiting the Caacupé deployment last year, I
> happened upon a meeting at one of the schools where the parents were
> being taught how to use the Journal so that they could talk with their
> children about their work, so I know that at least in some places, the
> Journal is being used in ways that we envisioned.) It was in response
> to feedback I got at the OLPC-sponsered assessment summit a few months
> back that I wrote the Portfolio activity --
> http://activities.sugarlabs.org/en-US/sugar/addon/4437 -- which I am
> hoping will lower the barrier to using portfolios as a routine part of
> the Sugar experience.
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> Walter Bender
> Sugar Labs
> IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
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