Open Thinking Turns Five

My first post to this blog is dated March 11, 2004. So this post marks the fifth birthday of my blog! Happy Birthday Open Thinking!!!

Happy Fifth Birthday Open Thinking!

This space has helped me to enjoy some of the greatest learning experiences of my career. It has connected me to many brilliant thinkers. It has enabled me to write and evaluate ideas in the open. It has become a storehouse for my thoughts, and an important component of my digital identity.

Had anyone told me how important to me this would be five years later, I would have never believed it.

Please join me in wishing Open Thinking a happy fifth birthday!

Canadian Educational Blogs

I have been awarded 2nd place in the educational category of the Canadian Blog Awards. I’m taking that designation with a grain of salt as there are many excellent Canadian educational blogs that weren’t even mentioned in the process. Thus, I’d like to start a list of active, longer-term, Canadian educational blogs. Here are the ones I know from memory, listed in no particular order. I will likely start a wikied list in the near future.

Canadian Edublog Award - 2nd Place

Mrs. Cassidy’s Classroom Blog – Kathy Cassidy
Make it Interesting – Chris Harbeck
Webbed Feat – Sylvia Currie
Clint Lalonde dot net – Clint Lalonde
samlab – Doug Symington
A Difference – Darren Kuropatwa
Half an Hour – Stephen Downes
OLDaily – Stephen Downes
Blog of Proximal Development – Konrad Glogowski
Musings – Just Learning – Sharon Peters
Ideas and Thoughts – Dean Shareski
McToonish – Heather Ross
Open Monologue – Rob Wall
Educational Discourse – Kelly Christopherson
Light in the Woods – Kyle Lichtenwald
Remote Access – Clarence Fisher
The Teaching Life – Cyril Kesten
Rick’s Café Canadien – Rick Schwier
Classroom Tech Tips – Donna Desroches
D’Arcy Norman dot net – D’Arcy Norman
Abject Learning – Brian Lamb
EdTechPost – Scott Leslie
elearnspace – George Siemens
Dave’s Educational Blog – Dave Cormier
Michael’s English Usage – Michael Lyons
Pair-a-Dimes – David Truss
Gnuosphere – Peter Rock
42/1 – Cyprien Lomas
Adventures in Instructional Support – Jim Sibley
Beyond Operant Conditioning and Bells – Stephanie Chu
Bird’s Eye View – Christopher Brooks
ehabitus – Norm Friesen
Michelle’s Online Learning Freakout Party Zone – Michelle Lamberson
Terry Anderson Blog – Terry Anderson
Free Resources for (Special) Education – Paul Hamilton

Allright. Who am I missing?

Update: I’ve created a wiki link. You’ll need to join the wikispace to add or edit the list. It would be great if we could categorize these as well.

Canadian Blog Awards

I forgot about this, but I have been nominated for a Canadian Blog Award in the Education category. I am very flattered to be in such amazing company (and not sure I belong). There are MANY other excellent Canadian blogs that should be in this list.

In any case, if you think this blog is worthy, I’d love your vote. As Clarence Fisher writes, Vote now. Vote often.

Top Educational Blogs – Aseem Badshah

Aseem Badshah has put together a list of the top 100 (or so) educational blogs. All blogs have at least a 50 or higher Technorati rating. Of course, with any list like this, there are always excellent blogs missed. Aseem describes himself as “a 19 year old student working to bring technology to schools.”

Here is the list.

What does it mean when you have read or subscribe to virtually every one of these blogs? And hey, cool, I made the list!

Thanks for the list Aseem, this is very useful and I will pass this on to my students this semester.

Insight On Academic Blogs

Here’s an interesting article from Inside Higher Ed titled “A Skeptic’s Take on Academic Blogs.”

Here’s my favorite piece, on that supports the decentralized argument. The author is talking about moving from a decentralized form of blogging (people have their own blogs) vs. a group blog format.

I have come to the conclusion that what was so good about the original disorganized format of the University Without Condition conversations was precisely that it was so decentralized. This feature allowed it to escape one of the major pitfalls of conversations based in blog comments — the inherently hierarchical nature of the format. In blog comments, someone has written out a thoughtful post in what they will often regard as their own personal space. They have an established community of commenters who are, for the most part, sympathetic to the author’s point of view. Thus, when someone comes along and starts criticizing the original post, there is naturally a temptation toward “circling the wagons.” Additionally, comment forms are generally cumbersome and difficult to use for in-depth conversation — with the paradoxical result that one will either dash off a quick comment that by definition cannot match the rigor of the original post, or else an overly long comment that people will experience as an imposition. Having various people responding on their own personal blogs rather than in comments gets around all these problems — the conversation is decentered, not localized to anyone’s “turf,” and people are more likely to write lengthier, more thoughtful responses if they are producing it for the sake of their own blog instead of writing something that will be hidden away in some obscure corner of someone else’s comment sections.

There’s some great insight, capturing a bit what I’ve learned being involved in an academic blog.