Spaces for Innovation

To Tweet, Perchance to Meme . . .

I find it interesting that a tweet, in the form of a personal invitation to join a conversation (that turns out to be a topic you know absolutely nothing about), can lead to something quite unexpected.

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This is the case with the #bcedchat, Sunday April 10th, 2016, an experience that was skillfully crafted by @CraigMah and @MsVictoriaOlson

Upon reflection, I realize that it was not so much the topic being discussed that night (creating memes and using Canva), it was much more about the power of the process designed for the learning to unfold. The chat was crafted as an opportunity to “hear” an idea, to venture forth in the moment and play with the idea; to muck about with something unfamiliar; to take risks, just try something, and,  do so with the encouragement and support of a community of diverse, connected learners. Isn’t this the basis of the authentic experiences that we strive to create for our students — designing transformed and engaged learning, teaching moments that create traction for learning . . . learning that sticks?

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This particular #bcedchat invited participants to be learners, to be willing to experiment in the moment and to share their learning during the process, all the while building community through humour, laughter, and playful sharing. Individuals who came to the chat with a deep skill set and well-honed prior knowledge of memes also had a platform and the opportunity to share their expertise. The feeling of flow, the time whizzing by was a clear indicator that something different might be going on:

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Engaging in this particular chat process reminded me of the key principles captured in “To Always Be a Learner“, a post by @gcouros

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If I wanted to become a better carpenter, I’d go find a good carpenter, and I’ll work with this carpenter on doing carpentry or making things. And that’s how I’ll get to be a better carpenter. So if I want to be a better learner, I’ll go find somebody who’s a good learner and with this person do some learning. But this is the opposite of what we do in our schools. We don’t allow the teacher to do any learning. We don’t allow the kids to have the experience of learning with the teacher because that’s incompatible with the concept of the curriculum where what is being taught is what’s already known. (Seymour Papert)

 

During the chat, @amyburvall shared a link to fabulous video, which speaks to the essence of where I hope to go next — to get “beyond elegant consumption”, one of the key messages shared by Doug Belshaw in the video below. (Click image to access video)

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It has been a couple of weeks since the chat and I am wondering, how this learning has furthered others’ work? In what ways are these tools finding new expression as a result of the chat? I continue to contemplate the use of memes and Canva within my own learning journey, and am experimenting with how to incorporate these within my approach to knowledge mobilization.

I continue to explore opportunities and possibilities to purposefully uplift, elevate and design representations of the moments of inspiration that connect with me in my twitter and web-based learning. Most recently, while following the #ulead16 conference via twitter, I found myself compelled to capture certain tweets differently, using images to further propel their meaning to viewers.

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I discovered that using the constraint of time to craft an image-based text form (challenging myself to create it while a twitter feed is moving rapidly along) is renewing and re-invigorating my approach to consolidating thinking. I find that I am noticing tweets quite differently. Throughout these rapid fire, text-based twitter interactions,  I am seeing new potential in these tweeted “nuggets of thought” and am considering the possibilities of turning key words or phrases from these tweets into visual snapshots of learning. I dive into the cycle of the creative process, challenging myself with the task of transforming the information or ideas being shared on the twitter timeline, into what I hope is an uplifted form of communication.

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To tweet, perchance to meme . . . so much learning is out there from so many great minds sharing thinking across the twitterverse. I continue to wrestle with “what do I need/want to share in this format, and, why capture it in this way; for what purpose will it ultimately serve?”

I am striving to practice and refine this new learning and hopefully put it to good use. I continue to explore and seek out opportunities to apply my thinking in creative ways.

Thank you @MsVictoriaOlson and @craigmah for unleashing the creative beast in inside me, reminding me to #alwaysbealearner, because in the end, aren’t #wearealllearners ?

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Footnote:

  • To tweet, perchance to meme — used with my sincerest apologies to Shakespeare
  • Meme-generator  — Have fun creating your own memes!

NOTE: “Cool learnings” is a collection of posts that attempt to capture my learning experiences encountered via the web and through social media. “Collaborative online opportunities to learn”, thus the title Cool Learnings…

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