That’s What I’m Talking About: The Personal Stream

Here’s another case of running across some writing by someone whom I respect that echoes in my mind as if I wrote it.

Earlier this week, Jeff Utecht (whose self-published book “Reach” is the guide to building personal learning networks) wrote a small bit about students and their “personal streams” of information.  He describes the conflict between the day-to-day lives of teenagers and the ways that they choose to access information, and contrasts it with the one-way, non-engaging modes of “information transfer” employed in schools.

His words resonate with me and they match what I see “on the ground” among the teenagers that I teach.  The look in their eyes when they are forced to absorb information in the linear, dry mode that we are pressured to use in this standardization-crazy environment breaks my heart a little every time I see it.

So, what is the answer?  Can we classroom teachers do more to make our “academic streams” more like their personal ones?