December 10, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Mathematicians love puzzles—they love to play with numbers and shapes but often their love can turn to words and other areas that, at least on the surface, have little to do with mathematics. One form of visual wordplay with some deep connections to mathematics, and one that I have played with over they years, are called ambigrams. (Click here for examples of ambigrams I have published on this blog in the past.) Ambigrams exploit how words are written and bring together the mathematics of symmetry, the elegance of typography and the psychology of visual perception to create surprising, artistic designs. For instance see the rotational ambigram for the word-pair “create-math” at the top and a design for “theorem” below. In both cases the words read the same even when rotated 180 degrees.
Till recently ambigrams were something I created for fun. I knew of their mathematical underpinings, explored them once in a while, but never really took that part seriously. This despite my interest in creativity and the value of making connections across disciplines. Well that has changed…
November 5, 2013 § Leave a Comment
November 5, 2013 § 2 Comments
I just read of the sad demise of Nalini Ambady, social psychologist at Stanford. Her research on the accuracy of first impressions connected with me (from the moment I first glimpsed it). As the NYTimes reports (Nalini Ambady, Psychologist of Intuition, Is Dead at 54) Dr. Ambady’s research on how people make snap judgements tells us just how important first impressions are.
November 1, 2013 § 12 Comments
We (Punya Mishra and Danah Henriksen, faculty at Michigan State University) are currently planning a special issue for the Journal of Teacher Education and Technology, on the topic of creativity. At the moment, we are looking for brief abstract submissions from educational scholars/authors, who may be interested in eventually submitting a full length piece on creativity (in the context of technology and teacher education). See below for a formal call for papers (with the brief abstract due at the beginning of December).
Drop us a line if you want to know more or forward this link to anybody who you think may be interested. Your help would be greatly appreciated.
~ Punya Mishra and Danah Henriksen (editors)
CALL FOR PAPERS: Special issue on Creativity, Technology & Teacher Education
October 15, 2013 § 2 Comments
I have been a fan of Banksy, the subversive British street artist, for a long time. I love the visuals he comes up with, the subversive quality of his art and most importantly his ability to take art out of the galleries into the real world. His most recent trick, during his New York residency, struck a chord deeper than ever before. Here is the description from the Huffington Post
On his website on Sunday, the artist announced that he had set up a stall along Central Park on Saturday—selling “100% authentic original signed Banksy canvases. For $60 each.” That’s right: Banksy, whose works sell for millions at auction, sold canvases for $60 on the streets of New York. And the most unbelievable part? Almost no one bought them. It was part stunt, part social experiment…
What’s ironic is that
A limited edition print of Love Is In The Air – the image of the man throwing a hand grenade of flowers, which was stationed on the center of the table – sold for $249,000 at Bonham’s last June.
And here’s the question
If people don’t know they are looking at work from a world-famous artist, do they even care?
September 23, 2013 § 1 Comment
TPACK Newsletter, Issue #17: September 2013
Welcome to the seventeenth edition of the (approximately bimonthly) TPACK Newsletter! TPACK work is continuing worldwide. This document contains recent updates to that work that we hope will be interesting and useful to you, our subscribers.
If you are not sure what TPACK is, please surf over to http://www.tpack.org/ to find out more.
Gratuitous Quote About Technology
New technology is common; new thinking is rare — Sir Peter Blake
In This Issue
-1. Gratuitous Quote About Technology
0. In This Issue (You are here.)
1. TPACK Newsletter Update
2. Recent TPACK Publications
3. Recent TPACK-Related Dissertations
4. Recent TPACK Presentations
5. Selected TPACK-Related Blog Entries
6. Recent TPACK-Related Videos
7. TPACK Newsletter Suggested Citation
8. Learning and Doing More with TPACK
–. Un-numbered miscellaneous stuff at the end
September 12, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Photo iPad Dream #2 by Lance Shields from Flickr
I received an email from one Holly Marich, a doctoral student in our hybrid-PhD program, asking if I knew about any technology usage surveys her school district can give their K-12 students. I didn’t know of one so I sent out a tweet:
September 10, 2013 § 1 Comment
Back in June 2011 I was in Paris for EduSummIT: Building a Global Community of Policy-Makers, Educators, and Researchers to Move Education into the Digital Age. EduSummIT was organized by UNESCO (along with other partners) and brought together over 120 scholars, policy makers from over 40 countries. I was part of a Thematic Focus Group emphasizing 21st century learning. It took two years but finally a special issue of the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning is out with 8 articles all emerging from the conference. Click here for the table of contents.
I am co-author on one article along with Joke Voogt from the University of Twente, Ola Erstad from University of Oslo, and Chris Dede from Harvard. Our article focuses on 21st Century competencies that are needed to be able to live in and contribute to our current (and future) society. A complete reference, abstract and a link to the pdf is given below:
Voogt, J., Erstad, O., Dede, C., & Mishra, P. (2013). Challenges to learning and schooling in the digital networked world of the 21st century. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 29(5), 403–413. « Read the rest of this entry »
September 7, 2013 § 2 Comments
Dame Kathleen Ollernshaw was deaf since the age of 8. Despite this she had an amazing life as a mathematician, amateur astronomer, politician (she served as mayor of Manchester as well as in the Thatcher administration) and mother. To learn more about her read this story on the Scientific American website, titled Centenarian Dame Kathleen Ollerenshaw—Conqueror of Magic Squares, Rubik’s Cube and Mauna Kea. People with diverse interests like this always fascinate me (maybe it is because I am that way as well – though clearly not at the level of Dame Ollernshaw). You should read the article in full but I am highlighting some quotes that stood out for me. « Read the rest of this entry »
August 27, 2013 § 1 Comment
The latest in our series Rethinking Technology and Creativity in the 21st Century is now available. The article was co-authored with Danah Henriksen (and the Deep-Play Research Group) and it titled: A NEW approach to defining and measuring creativity. In this article we seek to provide a definition of creativity, and in turn offer an example of an ongoing research project in which this definition is being used to develop rubrics for evaluating the products of the creative process. Here is a link to the full article
Mishra, P., Henriksen, D., & the Deep-Play Research Group (2013). A NEW approach to defining and measuring creativity. Tech Trends (57) 5, p. 5-13.
Here is a key quote from the article: « Read the rest of this entry »
August 25, 2013 § Leave a Comment
I just discovered that Learning & Leading with Technology had an article, back in 2010, about the TPACK game. The TPACK game is something Matt, Judi Harris and I had come up with for the National Technology Leadership Summit in Washington DC, back in 2007. Matt has even created an online version, something I had blogged about previously here. Anyway, the article by Karen Richardson describes the game in some detail (see here for a PDF of the entire issue – then scroll down to page 34 for the actual article: TPACK Game On). What was interesting was that in the introduction Karen credits two of us (Punya & Matt) as first proposing the TPACK framework back in 2006, (and this is the interesting part) when we were “graduate students at Michigan State University” (see snippet above). I wish that were the case! The fact of the matter is that we were both faculty members at MSU at that time. We were young(er) back then but were surely not graduate students! A small (funny) error in what is otherwise a fine introduction to the TPACK framework and game. Incidentally the TPACK game has now made its way into the workshops created for Microsoft’s TEI initiative.
August 24, 2013 § 1 Comment
The Commonwealth Educational Media Center for Asia (CEMCA) recently published a report on ICT Integrated Teacher Education Models. One of the pieces in the report was by us. Here it is below: « Read the rest of this entry »
August 22, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Back in 1986, Anand Narasimhan and I wrote a short story titled “We all fall down,” that was published the popular-science magazine Science Today. Science Today, edited by Mukul Sharma who wrote science fiction himself, was maybe the only outlet where you could publish science fiction. Anyway, the story was published in the August 1987 issue of the magazine.
I had forgotten about it completely but I know I had scanned it years ago – so I wouldn’t have to hang on to the paper version. Of course I didn’t have a clue as to where the pdf was, what I had named it etc. etc. An hour or so of digging around on my computer I did locate it… reading through it after so many years was kinda fun. And then I discovered something interesting.
August 22, 2013 § 1 Comment
Connecting birds nests to “crop circles under the ocean” leading to some thoughts on perception, beauty and finding intelligent life in the universe (or maybe even on this planet).
The other day I found a bird’s nest on my front lawn. Most probably it had fallen down from the tree above. Here it is. It is a tiny thing. One regular egg would fit snugly in it.
August 9, 2013 § 1 Comment
Matt and I were invited to Sydney, Australia a year ago as a part of the Teaching Teachers for the Future (TTF) project. You can see a report in the New Educator: TPACK takes hold in Australia. As a part of this visit we were interviewed to speak a bit about leadership. I just found the video online… so for the record, here it is. Enjoy (or not).
August 8, 2013 § 2 Comments
Hot off the press: The Handbook of Research on Educational Communications and Technology, edited by Spector, Merrill, Elen & Bishop. And we have a chapter in it… Complete reference and abstract below:
August 8, 2013 § 6 Comments
One of the challenges faced by all instructors is ensuring that students actually read the textbook. This summer we came up with a innovative assignment to address this issue. The book in question was Daniel Willingham’s Why Don’t Students Like School? A cognitive scientist answers questions about how the mind works and what it means for the classroom.
We called it the 3 x 3 x 3 project since their task was to create a video overview for each of the chapters in the book under the following guidelines: the video should be no more than 3 minutes long, it would provide 3 key ideas from the chapter and 3 practical implications of these ideas for educators and for teaching (hence 3 x 3 x 3!).
Beyond that we provided no constraints on the technology to be used, style to be followed. SInce we had 5 groups and the book has 9 chapters and a conclusion, each group got to create two of these short videos.
Here are the 10 videos the students created. In essence these 10 videos are a video summary of the book in 30 minutes! Enjoy.
August 6, 2013 § 1 Comment
Back when I was a graduate student I got bitten by the bug of palindromic poetry – poems that read the same when read backwards. This is consistent with my love for ambigrams and other kinds of symmetrical wordplay. I had posted them on the web a while ago and there they have stayed… for years. Once in a while someone finds them and writes to me (a couple of interesting stories that emerged from this can be found here and here).
Here is one I wrote back in 2002, titled “Who wrote this poem.” It has surface similarity to Escher’s famous lithograph “Drawing Hands.” Let me know what you think…
August 5, 2013 § Leave a Comment
I teaching CEP817, Learning Technology by Design in the spring semester. This is a course I love but it also one that needs to be redesigned. So I am always on the look-out for new resources that can help me rethink the class. I just came across the following website: Design Thinking Resources for Educators that seems to be just right for what I do (plan to do). So here it is… merely for archival purposes.
August 1, 2013 § 1 Comment
Trees are some of the largest living things in the world. They can weigh tons. For instance the One Oak Tree project measured and weighed a 222 year old Oak tree – and it’s weight was 14.4 Tonnes (3.86 tonnes of which was dry weight). That’s a lot of stuff! And this is not even an exceptional tree by any stretch of the imagination.
And imagine that all this stuff starts from a small oak seed! So where does all this bulk come from? « Read the rest of this entry »
July 31, 2013 § 1 Comment
Steven Jobs famously said,
Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things.
This summer the students and instructors of the East Lansing cohort of the MAET program created a short video around this quote.
July 23, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Note: This post has been edited somewhat to (a) clearly hide the url, which I had not done a good job of before; and (b) to add a few suggestions in the last paragraph for some strategies to make it easier for the participants to take part in the study. (September 18, 2013).
There are many pitfalls one can face while engaged in conducting research with humans. For instance, if you are designing a survey it is important to make it easy for participants to actually complete it. Matt Koehler pointed out to me one person who just got it totally wrong.
Here is a flyer, recruiting participants for a study on college students’ use of social media, that has been posted near the elevators here at Erickson Hall.
July 19, 2013 § Leave a Comment
You are cordially invited to our current MAET Summer 2013 students’ final project showcase, on July 26th, at 10am, in room 252 Erickson Hall. As you may know from your own past experiences with the summer program, our students spend several intensive weeks of work, study, and play during the summer — where they are involved with a range of creative educational technology projects. These projects involved technology and new media of all kinds, and showcase the innovation, research, and technology leadership that we take pride in amongst our graduates.
As a proud MAET graduate, current student or friend of the program, you are invited both to the technology showcase session that morning, as well as the potluck lunch that follows at 11:30. It would be wonderful to share with you some of the current work in our program, and to hear more about your own continued successes as a technology teacher/leader/innovator.
Please complete this short Web-form to let us know if you will be able to make it to the 2013 project showcase: https://docs.google.com/forms/
We hope to see you there!
July 19, 2013 § Leave a Comment
My website has been facing all kinds of problems over the past few weeks. We have been working on figuring out what went wrong and trying to ensure that it doesn’t recur – but it has taken a while and it’s not clear to us whether we have it all figured out. So the site is up now (with a default template), but in essence I am not sure if it will crash again. So apologies to all who have tried to access the site and here’s to hoping that we have it all figured out.
July 5, 2013 § 6 Comments
This article has been a while coming… but our paper on an analysis of 21st century learning frameworks and implications for teacher knowledge is finally in print. A previous version of the paper can be found here. Here is the full reference with a link to the article. Citation and abstract appear below…
June 21, 2013 § Leave a Comment
I have written previously about determining the shape of the earth… for instance, here is a post on seeing the shape of the earth using eclipses. (A somewhat similar effect could be seen in my photo of the moon during a lunar eclipse). On the web, I found another way of computing the shape of the earth through studying the turbulent wake of a ship. And then there was the post about reconciling the shape of the earth with the maps or projections we typically use (such as the mercator projection).
I was thus glad to find the following video: Top 10 reasons why we know the Earth is round « Read the rest of this entry »
June 4, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Just as the subject line says, new ambigram design this time for the word “motivation”
May 31, 2013 § Leave a Comment
The latest in our series Rethinking Technology and Creativity in the 21st Century is now available. The article was co-authored with William Cain, Sandra Sawaya and Danah Henriksen (and the Deep-Play Research Group) and deals with the issue of how expertise may actually hinder creative solutions and that novices may be the source of creative solutions—only if the experts learn to listen to them and to “try to understand the deeper patterns of human interaction, to learn from scholars and history, and to listen to what users are saying. But most importantly, to closely observe what they do.” We ground this broader issue in issues related to the design of hybrid or blended learning spaces, specifically referring to some fascinating work being done by William, Sandra and John Bell on developing a typology of models of interaction in face to face, online and hybrid courses.
May 31, 2013 § Leave a Comment
I love the idea of self-reference, words or sentences that refer to themselves in some manner or another. For instance consider the sentence,
This is a sentence.
This is an example of a relatively benign self-referential sentence. Other examples may not be less well-mannered… in fact some sentences can be downright pathological. For instance consider this one:
This sentence contains two erors.
May 30, 2013 § 1 Comment
Curt Bonk is Professor of Instructional Systems Technology in the School of Education at Indiana University. Curt is one of the most fun academics I know. He is also a good friend. That’s us at the COSN conference earlier this year.
What I didn’t remember was that quite a few years ago, I had played around with his name and had created an animated ambigram of his name – an animato-ambigram if you may. While looking for something else I stumbled upon it again.