Shared purpose

Nerf Gun Modding, Parenting, and Winding Pathways of Interest Development

June 17, 2013

This is the first of a series of posts I plan to contribute on how connected learning relates to my own everyday life as a parent, and what I am learning from my own kids about making, learning, gaming, and online communication. Clearly the role of parents, siblings, and other caregivers in the family is critical to supporting, directing, or impeding connected learning for young people, and it can be a challenge to get a view into these micropolitics of the home.


To Geekdom! What Can StarCraft II Tell Us About Attaining Geek-hood?

June 10, 2013

Not long after I first participated in the StarCraft community, I fell in love with it. I admire its members’ activism, congeniality, and camaraderie. The players built the community infrastructure including organizations, learning ethos, social networks, and other programs. The StarCraft II community reveals one possible model of how peer-supported and academically relevant learning may manifest in grassroots and openly-networked settings.


Feedback and Help as Key Ingredients for an Active Peer-Supported Community

May 31, 2013

The Wrestling Boards is an online community based around a set of forums that discusses all things related to wrestling. There are sub-forums for fans to discuss wrestling companies and shows, like General WWE, RAW, Smackdown, NXT, Payback, and TNA impact. There are also sub-forums for members to introduce themselves, give suggestions, and discuss off topic, games, sports, and fantasy wrestling. The members of this site are big fans of wrestling and avid participants in the community.


Boss Level: A School’s Experiment with Connected Learning

April 19, 2013

As a CLRN Research Fellow, I spend a lot of time thinking about Connected Learning and what it means for schools.  At its core, Connected Learning is about equity and empowering students to become change agents in their communities now, and not just when they reach adulthood.  But what does connected learning look like in practice, in a school setting?  To gain some insight on this question, I have spent the last couple of months observing schools that are trying to integrate connected learning principles into their curriculum and organizational structures.


No One Edits Alone: Connected Learning in Game-Based Wikis

April 5, 2013

Guest blogger biography: Amanda Ochsner is currently a PhD student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Interim Research Manager at the Games+Learning+Society Center. Amanda’s research interests focus on learning in online game communities. She is also working on a team project for the design of an online space for young women to learn computational literacies and computer programming.


What We Can Learn From the StarCraft II Elites

March 4, 2013

In early February of this year, I visited a middle school near a historic district in Chinatown. The school is one hundred years old with a rich colonial history. I met Gary, the head of information technologies at the school, who is also a math teacher.  Gary mentioned to me he wants to develop an app to help their 800 students learn about the school’s heritage. In the past, the school had students fill up a booklet by answering a list of twenty or so predetermined questions, like naming a celebrity alumni.



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