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My quick thoughts, back stage, and rants as I try to Teach kids about the Web while learning how to help others build a better Web.


Come Journey Through the IndieWeb Sites


Greg McVerry

Participatory Design Research and Educational Justice: StudyingLearning and Relations Within Social Change Making

Importantly, PDR maintains a commitment to advancing fundamental insights about human learning and development through explicit attention to what forms of knowledge are generated, how, why, where and by whom.

So it is a generative process

Greg McVerry

An Autoethnography on Learning About Autoethnography

I can write this down now. It has been swirling around in my head for a month, the readings mixing with my thoughts and reactions, but I did not know just how to put it down on paper. So much of what I want to say about autoethnography is about me, not it.

Okay maybe I am on the write track. I kinda wanna lose the traditional research headings. Gonna keep them for planning so the semantic sturcutre lies beneath and through whatever blanket of truth I weave.

reflexivity and voice, various vague approaches to autobiographical inquiry, validity and acceptability, defences and criticisms, and a wide range of published personal narratives, the typical product of autoethnography.

keeping with the essence of autoethnography, I finally came to the realization that I could share my experience of learning about autoethnography and, in the text, co-mingle me and it.

Philosophical and theoretical foundations for autobiographical methods

Think we can skip the whole positvist and post modern debate.

feminist researchers “emphasize the subjective, empathetic, process-oriented, and inclusive sides of social life” (Neuman, 1994, p. 72).

Stivers (1993) has stated that a vision of universal truth is really just a dream of power over others and that liberatory, emancipatory projects are better served by alternative knowledge production process.

Taking the question of voice and representation a step further, we could argue that an individual is best situated to describe his or her own experience more accurately than anyone else

The potential power of autoethnography to address unanswered questions and include the new and unique ideas of the researcher is inspiring to me as one who wishes to find my niche and make my own special contribution.

They noted, however, that the term autoethnography has been in use for more than 20 years (originated by Hayano, 1979) and has become the term of choice in describing studies of a personal nature (Ellis, 2004;Ellis & Bochner, 2000).

The basic design of a heuristic research project involves six steps: initial engagement, immersion, incubation, illumination, explication, and culmination in a creative synthesis (Moustakas, 1990)

Although these phases, as described by Moustakas (1990), strike me as quite idealistic and abstract, they do set the tone for a very nontraditional form of study that “engages one‟s total self and evokes a personal and passionate involvement and active participation in the [research] process” (p. 42).

autobiographical research methods have become increasingly known as “autoethnography” and have been promoted, influenced, and developed by Ellis and Bochner (1999, 2000).

Muncey (2005) added some concrete assistance to the question of “how to do” autoethnography. She suggested the use of snapshots, artifacts/documents, metaphor, and psychological and literal journeys as techniques for reflecting on and conveying a “patchwork of feelings, experiences, emotions, and behaviors that portray a more complete view of . . . life” (p. 10).

A third widely discussed approach to the researcher‟s use of self is personal narrative. Personal narrative is often presented as a typical product of autoethnography but is also proposed as a method unto itself.

Autoethnographers tend to vary in their emphasis on auto- (self), -ethno- (the cultural link), and -graphy (the application of a research process) (Ellis & Bochner, 2000, paraphrasing Reed- Danahay, 1997).

Holt (2001) published an autoethnography that is similar in approach to Sparkes‟s (1996), although it deals with a very different topic. Holt told his story about becoming a graduate teaching assistant in a university and using a three-level reflection strategy to refine his teaching methods.

Duncan, autoethnography was a method of inquiry in which the inner dialogue of the researcher was considered valid, that encouraged systematic reflection, offered an organized and traceable means of data analysis and resulted in a scholarly account (p. 3). Rigor in the research process (“-graphy”)

On the other end of the continuum are a number of examples of personal narrative that rely almost exclusively on a highly personal, evocative writing style, focusing on the auto-, omitting any reference to research conventions, and leaving the reader to make his or her own societal or cultural applications. An essay called “A Choice for K‟aila” (Paulette, 1993) is a mother‟s story about her decision not to permit her infant son, with terminal liver disease, to have a liver transplant.

Despite their wide-ranging characteristics, autoethnographic writings all begin with the researcher‟s use of the subjective self. By using self as a source of data, perhaps the only source, autoethnography has been criticized for being self-indulgent, narcissistic, introspective, and individualized (Atkinson, 1997; Sparkes, 2000).

Greg McVerry

Reading for Understanding Toward an R&D Program in Reading Comprehension

All high school graduates are facing an increased need for a high degree ofliteracy,

What do they my by high degree?

Learning to read well is a long-term developmental process. At the end point,the proficient adult reader can read a variety of materials with ease and interest,can read for varying purposes, and can read with comprehension even whenthe material is neither easy to understand nor intrinsically interesting.

capabilities, motivation, and knowledge (XIV)

Those representations include the surface code (theexact wording of the text), the text base (idea units representing the meaning ofthe text), and the mental models (the way in which information is processed formeaning) that are embedded in the text. Electronic text presents particularchallenges to comprehension (e.g., dealing with the non-linear nature of hypertext),

Greg McVerry

Hold Up! Time For An Explanatory Comma : NPR One

never thought about this as I microagression as I teach folks to explain everything and everyone with an appositive...always reduce inferences on the audiences or respecting knowledge and identity .hrrrrmmm

Greg McVerry

Cognitive Apprenticeship

in apprenticeship learning target skills are not only continually in use by skilled practioners, but are instrumental in completing meangingful tasks

learning of skills and knowledge embedded in social and functional context 456


cognitive apprenticeships:
-"designed to teach the process experts use to handle complex tasks p. 457"

agentive apprenticeships
-designed to support community goals through learner growth

cogntivie apprenticeship
-learning through guided experienced

agentive appretniceship
-learning through a networked exeperience

cogntive apprenticeship
-require extensive techniques to encourage the development of self correction and monitoring skills 458

agentive appretniceship
-these skills are encouraged, documented, and parsed using blogging and social media tools

Network Technologies and Abstracted Replay
-chat rooms

Tracking the article writing

Greg McVerry

Knitting rebellion: Elizabeth Zimmermann,identity, and craftsmanship in post war America

Elizabeth’s philosophy of knitting stressed each knitter as an independent craftsman responsible for material and design choices, in opposition to the uncritical, or “blind follower” of the patterns knitter of the knitting industry publications. This shift in the practices of knitting intersected with increasing feminine autonomy and increasing interest in fiber arts to shape a new identity of ‘the knitter’ as original and self-determining craftsman, rather than the mere producer-reproducer of knit objects for domestic consumption.

The work of anthropologists Dorothy Holland and Jean Lave in their text History in Person focuses on social and individual practices generative of individual and communal identities in relationship to the larger and more durably instituted historical and cultural movements, and offers a number of contemporary and historical case studies of this process

Francesca Bray brings this recognition of the individual acting in collusion and resistance to social identity in her work on hand weaving as a technological production of women’s identity in late Imperial Chinese society. Her example of the swadeshi movement of mid-century India, with its production of homespun cloth as a “less economically efficient” commercial enterprise while remaining a highly “efficient technique for the production of Indian Nationalism

Marie Griffith’s scholarship on conservative religious women and their embrace of a recognizable form of traditional femininity while reshuffling pre-existing elements of identity into new priorities outside of traditional gender roles and spaces

Thus knitting as craftsmanship, and as a viable form of cultural production, was able to generate the individual and social identities that could support major new publications, institutions and associations, that could in turn, self-replicate across time and reproduce new individuals, in resistance to previously dominant conceptual forms of commerce and industry.

this is why knitting fits into the idea of innovation systems as the focus is on the identity of the agent in face of the collective.


Greg McVerry

Cognitive Apprenticeship and Instructional Technology

The computer allows us to create environments that mimic situations in the real world thatwe cannot otherwise realize in a classroom (or home). One approach is through microworids,but also through computer networks, data bases, graphing packages and text editors (Collins,1986).

here the technology is cast as an other to "simulate" the real world rather than just being part of the world as it is today

Six elements

  1. situated learning
  2. modeling and explaining
  3. coaching
  4. reflecting on performance
  5. articulaion Articulation refers to methods for forcing students to explain and think about what they aredoing i.e. making their tacit knowledge explicit.--notice JPG keeps this in Affinity Spaces
  6. Exploration

Greg McVerry

The Epistemology of Hegel: An Underlying Approach to Learning

In the Associationist epistemology, knowledge is the result of experience, we perceive and understand the world through individual experience of it.

Instead Kant argued that our experience does not directly lead to knowledge, but rather the mind interprets the experience through structures that the mind imposes (such as cause and effect, real or hypothetical), and thus the mind takes the input from experiences and constructsan understanding of it [3].

Hegel added two key components to the Kantian idea of construction of knowledge: The first, laid out in his 1807 Phänomenologie des Geistes(usually translated as Phenomenology of the Mind [5] or of the Spirit [6], neither of which precisely captures the meaning of Geist) is that of the Volksgeist (roughly the spirit of a people) which we can largely interpret as what we mean today by ‘culture’. We come to our knowledge by means of the culture in which we find ourselves.

The second is the dialectic method for arriving at truth. The classic formulation of this is Fichte’s: Thesis, Antithesis, Synthesis [7] (although Hegel himself used the formulation abstract negative concrete).

Thus we have the three basic components of the Hegelian epistemology: a) that knowledge is constructed by the mind rather than simply copied from the world, b) that this knowledge construction takes place within a cultural context that determines (to some extent) the form of the knowledge, and c) that the mode for this construction takes the form of a dialog (i.e. it is dialectic)

Freire argued strongly against an Associationist epistemology and its instantiation in the classroom, which he termed the banking model of instruction. Instead he argued that pedagogy needed to be responsive to the students’ need to a) construct rather than receive knowledge, b) within the framework of their own culture and language, c) through the use of respectful dialogue.

Vygotsky's  most important and influential insight was that of mediation between the learner and the object of the learning: that what distinguishes human from animal learning was the use of concrete but more importantly, psychological tools

In AST, a learning activity is composed of three central components: the subject (or learner), the object (produced by the learning activity), and the community (typically the class, including the instructor). Each pair of these components is related through a culturally specific set of mediators

Apprenticeship [21]. Collins and Kapur outline the four components of their model of Constructivist pedagogy: identification of the kinds of knowledge in the tasks to be taught, determination of the sequencing of those tasks, the set of instructional methods, with emphasis on dialog and active construction of knowledge, and finally, the cultural context (which they call the ‘sociology’) [22]


Greg McVerry

Semiotic Social Spaces and Affinity SpacesFromThe Age of Mythologyto Today’s Schools James Paul Gee

In this paper, I consider an alternative to the notion of a “communityof practice” (Lave and Wenger1991;Wenger1998). This alternativefocuses on the idea of aspacein which people interact, rather thanonmembershipin a community.

This is a key difference between cogntive apprenticeship and agentive apprenticeship. The space itself can often act as a mentor. This includes the people, knowledge repositories, and the tools.

Gee notes communities requires some level of membership. You are in or out whereas spaces allow folks to decide to stay a bit or a awhile.

To define any SSS, we needfirst to start with somecontent, something for the space to be “about”(remember, it’s asemioticsocial space).

Another way to put this is to say that theSSS has two aspects, an internal aspect and an external aspect. AnySSS can be viewed internally as a set of signs (a type of content) orexternally in terms of the individual and social practices in whichpeople engage in respect to the set of signs

What are the internal and external signs of of ?

To take an internal view of the SSS of real-time strategy games is toask about the design of such games. To take an external view of the SSSof real-time strategy games is to ask about the ways in which peopleorganise their thoughts, beliefs, values, actions and social interactionsin relation to the signs made available in such games

And, of course, the acts of people helping to form the external grammar of the SSS as a set of social practices and typical identitiesc an rebound on the acts of those helping to design the internal gram-mar of the SSS as content, since the internal designers must react to the pleasures and displeasures of the people interacting with the semiotic domain.

A portal is anythingthat gives access to the signs of the SSS and to ways of interactingwith those signs, by oneself or with other people.

What are the portals for ds106 and IndieWeb for both it is the hahtag but ds106 can be taken for undergraduate credit,

Greg McVerry

Working Boundaries: From Student Resistance to Student Agency

Trainor, on the other hand, retains a stronger commitment to critical pedagogy's core concerns and contends that student resistance stems not from instructors' unethical commitment to those concerns but from teachers' inadequate attention to how critical pedagogy positions students as readers and writers. She argues that to avoid generating student resistance, "we need to be more aware of the rhetorical frames our pedagogies provide for students as they structure identity"

he answer to student resistance is to develop strategies that create mutuality between teachers and students and so support students' agency in interpreting texts and developing arguments. The most liberatory teacher, they hold, can inadvertently "reproduce traditional teacher student relations"

I think we need to move the needle away from argument

). The measure of this transformation is how extensively students and teachers share authority in directing classroom discourse and in constructing knowledge within the course

technology complicates this as new modes and tools must be tried....

Discourse seems to be the only path to mutuality in the piece. Little attention paid to the art the students create. I wonder if just being yourself online is a sense of agency or conversely if the low self-efficacy with tech hurts agency enough that we do not see knowledge gains.


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