Digital literacy: Brainstorming online.
Do they teach brainstorming in school?
Can teams plan a project without brainstorming?
Can you teach creativity?
Draft plan for teaching students how to brainstorm effectively. That is one of the skills needed for creativity in a project. If you will have them doing projects to learn, help them learn how to do projects.
Why a virtual world?
- By virtual world, I mean a user-built and social simulation of a brainstorming environment.
- Since it is user-built, the teacher can add a project wall.
- User-built also means that web pages can be displayed in the scene.
- Since it is social, each person is represented by a recognizable avatar that has a designated location in the simulated space.
- Social further means that the people speak in voice.
- Social also means that people can type in local text chat.
- But the main reason is that brainstorming is a social activity.
- Local text chat can be stored and made available to the teacher.
- Thus the teacher does not need to be present at most brainstorming sessions.
- Project wall anyone can type on. Contents persist and are seen by the teacher.
- Bulletin board (BB) that only the recorder can type on.
- For example, Google Docs and/or A Google Workspace.
- A learning management system (LMS) should provide support for a project wall.
- The project wall should carry a clear and concrete statement of the project objective.
- The objective should clearly describe the outcome product.
- It may carry related information or ideas from previous work of the team on from the teacher.
- All students need contact in voice, video, and text.
- Voice, video, and local text communication are routinely supplied by virtual worlds.
- The project wall may have areas for typing by designated participants.
- Digital teaching assistant (DTA): The Digital Teaching Assistant (DTA) for MUVES (virtual worlds): Summary
Needed digital skills
- Standard basic skills.
- Basic skills needed for attending a meeting or class in a virtual world. DTA content page
- Especially: View control
- Use of the project wall and BB software.
- One or more clear statements of the objective are at the top of the project board.
- These might all be provided by the teacher or experienced teams might add some.
- Variants: Abstract and promotional, concrete, narrative.
- Abstract: description for outsiders.
- Concrete: description of what you will produce.
- Narrative: What will happen as you deliver the product.
- List all the ways you might meet the objective.
- Think quantity over quality.
- The way to find a good idea is to have lots of ideas to choose from.
- Any idea is good, however wild it is.
- Any criticism is out. (Criticism will kill brainstorming if it persists.)
- The standard response to criticism is "We save evaluation till later."
- Or the criticism may suggest another idea.
- Every session has a planned start and end time.
Project wall and BB rules
- Each person has a panel on the project wall and can write what they want on it.
- DTA records such entries with names and makes them available to the teacher.
- Only the recorder can write on the BB (recorder writes to DTA who writes to BB).
- Certain roles are needed for effective brainstorming.
- These roles may be filled spontaneously by experienced participants.
- But for groups of inexperienced people, it may be good to assign these roles.
- Teacher may assign these roles via the DTA.
- Teacher may seek advice from the team on role assignment.
- Recorder has exclusive access to the public bulletin board (BB)
- Task: Put all ideas and nothing else on the BB.
- May require that the idea be typed into local chat, then copy the idea (with originator's name) onto the BB
- DTA monitors entries, tracks names, may assess relevance.
- Call attention to critical times, such as start and end times.
- Suggest wind-up actions about 10 mins. before end time.
- DTA can supply this role
- Keeps the group on track toward its destination.
- When the conversation gets off track.
- DTA coaching: If entries on BB drop off, DTA asks Helm what the team is discussing.
- If necessary, DTA suggests a reminder of the topic.
- Watches quiet people for efforts to speak, interrupts discussion to ask them to speak.
- DTA coaching: Checks for names not appearing on BB or project wall, asks gatekeeper to check with them.
- At random times DTA asks a randomly chosen team member this question:
- "How would you rate the team's progress in the last few minutes: good, average, poor?"
- Depending on the answer, DTA asks why and what action is recommended.
- DTA makes these results available to the teacher.
- Reflection (for teacher and student)
- Specific DTA functions cited in connection with specific roles: Helm, Gatekeeper, Recorder
- Just after the scheduled start time the DTA shows a list of the agenda items and the pending action items.
- DTA asks "Where shall we start?"
- Note: This is a standard role that should be taken by a group member. The DTA is modelling the needed action.
- At about 10 minutes before the end time of the meeting, the DTA notes the time and suggests a start on the meeting report.
Visit me on the web
- Drop by my web offices Weekdays: 12:-12:30 pm Central time (US)
- I am available for free consulting on any topic in this blog.
- Cybalounge and 3DWebWorldz (Orientation room)
- I will be in both places, so you may need to speak to get my attention.
- Web-worlds, 3D virtual worlds running in a browser. Summary
- And we can visit the Writer's Workshop on the Web
- Don't register -- enter as guest.
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- Selby Evans in Kitely and Hypergrid, Thinkerer Melville in Second Life.