From “Jargon Watch” in Wired Magazine, October 2008:
Edupunk. n. Avoiding mainstream teaching tools like Powerpoint and Blackboard, edupunks bring the rebellious attitude and DIY ehos of '70s bands like the Clash to the classroom.
This really struck a chord with me. (I associate edupunks more closely with cyberpunks and steampunks than punk rockers, but the attitude is about right.) Recently, I’ve been kicking around the idea of a conference presentation on this theme with a colleague of mine, Matt at KSA.
We’ve been struck both by the variety of great technology that is becoming available to educators and by the cost of distributing it widely. With this in mind, I present my list of Shiny New Technologies and edupunk workarounds.
- Smartboards / $50 Interactive Whiteboards
- Blackboard / Moodle
- Microsoft Office / Open Office & Google Docs
- Dedicated Streaming Server / Icecast
Clearly, the cheap / free versions require more work. But, as Matt pointed out to me, these technologies are much more responsive to user requests for features. Communities of users exist that work together to make changes and improvements very quickly. Something that doesn’t happen with larger, corporate versions.
Can you think of other examples? Leave me a comment.