First of two ramp up discussions

September 20, 2006

We met for an hour today and, even though we had a very noisy phone bridge, the excitement was palpable and the conversation had a life of its own. Although we’ve been working together online for a month or more, there is nothing like actually listening to each other and thinking together to get the  juices running.  We acknowledged that “we meet in advance, not to close off any possibilities but to move the discussion forward about what we might do and how.” The following topics were proposed for discussion during our dialog:

  • Effect of Web 2.0 tools on our notion of what a community of practice looks like.
  • How to talk about and learn from each other about timing in the design of learning events when we don’t have traditional constraints such as the classroom hour. When does the learning happen?
  • How to talk about the value of play and error correction in learning events? Are these topics more important today than they were before?
  • Process innovation versus content innovation? How describe and justify to others?
  • All of this with an overarching focus on memory — how it’s formed and what use it is in a community of practice.

We are also thinking of experimenting with process and how we organize ourselves for learning during the dialog:

  • Stories and other techniques to put cases for discussion “on the table” at the beginning of a segment
  • Improvisations or dramatizations to demonstrate what we learned at the end of a segment
  • Expeditions to organizations or places that are or were once exemplary as venues for learning.
  • Different ways of representing what we’ve done, from written notes to audio or video recordings to make it more public, porous and legitimate
  • Any methods of welcoming participants from the online Foundations of Communities of Practice workshop into our conversation
  • Having each segment of the schedule (including evenings) organized by a different team, who would be responsible for all of the above
  • How work with the likelihood that we will have no internet access at the guest house where we’ll be staying.

In case you’re curious (you could still join us in Florence!) here is a 4 minute audio recording that gives you a sense of the voices that will be there.  It turns out that Etienne Wenger will definitely join us for part of the time.

3 Responses to “First of two ramp up discussions”

  1. derekcx Says:

    This is great John, thanks.
    We have the Christchurch arm of the open space roadshow on today: The Future of Learning in a Networked World.
    Will check in later.

    Community (on all it’s forms) and web 2.0 (especially blogs and the notions of personal spaces) are strong themes, and some very interesting stories.

    I had supper last night with the group that arrived, a fascinating mixture of theory and practice among the daily life of these guys. Their expodition yesterday included a train trip in Dunedin, there they used a laptop with camera and stickies to film some ideas – probably destined for YouTube. 🙂

    I’ll think some more about Florence later. We leave in 60 hours.

  2. Just finished the audio and thanks for summarising the points John. It was great to hear everyone’s voices.

    I’m very interested in how memory is recreated each time we remember something and the role of story in both the process of recalling and helping people to recall. I would also like to explore the idea of multiple truths and how we might convey these ideas to positivists without coming across as unbalanced 🙂

  3. […] The first of the teleconferences was documented in the Prato Dialogue blog.  This entry tells about the things the group discussed as a possible agenda for the f2f time. […]

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