Reflection Week 8: Dawn of the Final Day

Well, we’re wrapping up the summer semester (thank god) and the end is finally in reasonable sight. I wanted to be sure this reflection provided a thorough run-down of the work I’d created, but I didn’t just want to present link after link after link. So, instead, I made a Timeline of the work I created for this class (assignments, critiques, and 1 Daily Create per week). You can see it below:

I don’t really know how to do a comprehensive “best of” of others’ work. Recently, I really enjoyed Brian’s Critique of “Killing Kennedy”. He actually recommended it to me but I had already decided on my final critique (woof) and I found it was a really good portrayal of the source material, while also being a pretty good semiotic analysis of its musical functions (take note, Nillson (sic)).

I also really enjoyed listening to Dara’s Week 6 reflection. I liked her examples of taking Diego to a coding camp and the literal side of coding as a language, which is normally something I actually think is oversimplifying, but in this case it made a lot of sense.

In case the timeline above wasn’t concise enough, here’s my scorecard as I see it:

Web: Timeline, Hack The News, 18 in the Bay critique

Social: Twitter Essays, Social Fiction

Dialog: Week 4 remix reflection, Podcast recorded with Brad and Sheena in early week 2, and included dialog in this post with Brian.

Graphic: at least 2. Signs from the Near Future, Pictogram Pictionary, and quite a few Daily Creates, namely the Lune that I made because the lunemaker wasn’t working. But also my MapStack, 5 words to impress, Chris Christie at the edge of the earth, and Golden Girls breaking my phone.

Video: 10 ways, Remixing Bobinchak video in week 4, Japan in 30 seconds video

Audio: 10 ways voiceover, Week 5 audio reflection

In regards to stretching myself, I think the above really reflects that. I tried hard to not rely on just tools with which I was familiar or comfortable; for those reasons I tried to avoid dialog and audio (and certain forms of video). I know you could say I could have tried to stretch myself to use those in different ways, but I did, and I really did want to embrace the making/creating/stretching aspect by forcing myself to use graphics/web tools in particular. With the exception of YouTube, Google Slides, and SoundCloud, (and Twitter, I suppose), I don’t think I actually used any tools that I had ever used before, and I think that speaks to my willingness to dive in. I was also pretty proud of myself- later in the course particularly- for willingly taking on what were basically assignments that I didn’t need to do, like my 18 in the Bay remix using coding/gaming literacies.

I guess the Audio component was my “weakest” in terms of number, and that was mostly due to my comfort with Audio (one would hope, as a music teacher). My reflection was definitely good in terms of a substantive use of Audio, and I think between my 10 ways and my In 30 Seconds assignments I used Audio to add to the assignments in ways that were not covered by the visuals or slides.

I generally felt fairly knowledge-able, in that I felt OPEN to learning, but to be honest it’s been awhile since I’ve learned something in a new way of learning, IE a new pedagogy, a new modality, etc. Last year I spent 2 days in a tiny town in northeastern Japan learning the Shamisen, but learning instruments is something I know! Being confronted with new skills that use tools I’ve never even heard of, let alone used before, is a circumstance that certainly forces you to be willing and able to learn, and that you learn how to learn. I think I also found myself coming away far more likely to look at the work of others and either think “I should do something like that!” or “Let’s figure out how to do that!”

Thinking about the Creative Cultures ideas of Having, Doing, Being, and Knowing I really see us working in all four of those. We have materials- digital tools- we are doing- making/creating- we are being- interacting/discussion- and we are knowing- learning/growing. Probably not all four at once, probably some at different times (more doing/having at the beginning probably, and more being/knowing at the end or throughout).

Regarding learning I think that was covered in my chat with Brian. You can hear it here:

But, regarding our objectives, I absolutely think we covered them as a class. We used/examined/critiqued digital tools, I think everyone was a user and an interrogator, I think we all developed a stance on digital tools and storytelling (or refined that stance) and we all certainly did a lot of making!

Best of all, I feel a lot less fear of creation or making, which I mentioned in the above audio was partially due to the quasi-anonymous nature of this course, but also because it was clear the goal was to grow and change and get better. As I said, that’s the kind of thing I, and I think we, want our students to aim for in any classroom. Sometimes I get a little bogged down by the ideas of obstacles or the obvious counter-arguments to be made, but then I remember that if I want to see a change or a development in pedagogy, it’s not going to present itself to me. I need to do it, and this past eight weeks did help me see what that can look and feel like.

And with that….#seacrestout

There used to be an Easter egg here, but you didn’t find it in time! Too bad. #you'rewelcome