Open Source Thinking - Part One
I read an interesting blog entry today by Cliff Atkinson who writes Beyond Bullets. In the entry, he takes the concept of open source software and applies it to the process of social construction of knowledge. He calls it open source thinking. I really like this label-a lot. I think it captures to a great extent what we can do with the many tools emerging today that promote the power of community as a learning environment. Our new charge as educators is to take this idea, open source thinking, and create learning environments where kids can create and learn together in a collaborative fashion. There will be great resistance from the content purveyors who believe in “one-source thinking” and that students understand best when they sit and listen passively to the content expert. But it most be done, and the truly innovative and creative and passionate educators will embrace it and look for ways to make open source thinking happen in spite of the myriad of obstacles that will be placed in their way. Much of this can, and should, happen with the support of digital networks. In my next post, I’ll provide two concrete examples of open source thinking that are currently occurring in our schools and how networks facilitate the process, and how learning becomes energized as a result.