Thursday, November 27, 2008

CCK08 simply complex

Someone (sorry, don't remember who) was observing the tendency today to reduce important complex issues to a single point or sound bite. This got me thinking. The "sage on the stage" superseded by the "guide on the side" representing a pedagogical shift falls into that category.

The tag lines are easy to remember. But the messages and mental pictures associated with each are very powerful. This is a good thing, even if they grate on George and others who have been over-exposed to them. These taglines are really useful. Time and again, faculty new to the changes in teaching and learning "get it" when they are introduced to these catch phrases.

As these taglines are going to be around for a while longer, we need to expand the set to include one that succinctly captures the essence of Connectivism. What is a nice little tagline that has the power to conjure up the complex mental image of what Connectivism is?

In my mind's eye, I see the sage on the stage as some over-bearing expert going on about something that is important and not very interesting. The guide on the side is the enthusiastic supportive coach-like person who wants nothing more than for me to succeed at doing what the guide is good at. Well, these are MY visualizations after all.

For connectivism, no strong image pops into my head. Having one would make this all so much easier to explain. That necessitates reducing something complex to its simplest form, but provides a framework to build an understanding for this important set of ideas. It needs to be simple, yet complex, and it needs a cute title.

Any suggestions?


  1. Sages and guides all the way down

  2. Can you please explain that one? I missed the significance there.

  3. I have been reading Stephen's
    He talks about the Triad - learner, host, provider model.

    The notion of Host is helpful. Brings to mind the GOs at a fabulous ClubMed-like educational resort. You can work on some new skill or knowledge area like juggling, enjoy good food and new friends, or sit in the shade with a trashy beach book. The hosts are there to see that you are safe and happy, and as challenged as you want to be. But basically, it is up to you to do as much or as little as you please.

    Capable hosts providing support and guidance for the learners' journey - here are the facilities, the resources, even the instructors if you need them. We would be happy to make suggestions as that is part of our service. These are all at your disposal for as long as you wish to stay.

    Sage : Guide : Host - this works for me.

  4. I think Anonymous might be referring to turtles. It only works if the world is flat.