My Action Plan Pitch: Forming Artisans in Untethered Teaching

Learning Environment

On Sunday I shared an overview of my digital learning environment action plan. If this is your first time visiting my blog, I encourage you to read that post. A quick reminder, I am in EDTC 6104 and we are discussing digital learning environments. This post will be a quick pitch of my learning environment incorporating this week’s course readings. We only have a so many seconds for an elevator pitch so please read fast! While this is in no way as important as a pitch that Gimlet Media had to give Chris Sacca for venture capital funding, it is important to be clear, concise, and ultimately make you excited about what I am doing!

Forming Artisans in Untethered Teaching

Faculty are busy: the endless onslaught of faculty governance meetings, coffee with students, department meetings, papers to grade, and–lets not forget–the requirement to “publish or perish” expunging “free time” from a professor’s lexicon. One more thing…faculty still have to teach classes and hold office hours! There isn’t time for yet another professional development session disguised as a quick meeting with free lunch.

Faculty don’t want another session about how to use technology, but they do need more sessions about why to teach in digital environments (Stewart, 2013).

It is time for a creative experiment. No more set of tools paired with help sheets packaged like take-and-bake pizza. The future of course development is about taking a step back and rethinking what is important and working together to create such an environment where inquiry thrives. To do that correctly you must sand down the surface to expose the rust for mitigation and then add new layers of paint. Last year when the City of Seattle stripped the Fremont Bridge to repair rust damage and then repaint, they created a stronger and longer lasting bridge. In the same way, we must remove destructive and unsound remnants, as Morris warns, “A climate of non-inquiry can create a robust online learning program. But it corrupts that program from the bottom, up.”

Photo by: Seattle Department of Transportation, 2015 https://flic.kr/p/ru88J7

Photo by: Seattle Department of Transportation, 2015 https://flic.kr/p/ru88J7

Therefore, we are developing the second iteration of untethered teaching to train faculty as craftspeople in dynamic teaching. As elegant uses of an iPad, faculty will implement active learning strategies affording better interaction with students in the classroom in ways that foster relationships, learning, and flexibility. Our untethered teaching community of practice 2.0 is structured in two parts. First, a weekly course where we learn our tools: what they are,  when to use them, how to use them well. Second, a twice per month inquiry-based problem solving community of practice where each faculty member, as suggested by Morris and Stommel (2013), works through problems in a community that “incites new ideas, elicits fiery discussion, and excites teachers about the possibilities inherent in digital pedagogy.”

Please apply if want to be an artisan in untethered teaching!

  5 comments for “My Action Plan Pitch: Forming Artisans in Untethered Teaching

  1. July 22, 2015 at 11:57 am

    You make me excited about what you’re doing! You make your work and the work you’re doing to serve others, very approachable. Busy people can relate to this: “Faculty are busy: the endless onslaught of faculty governance meetings, coffee with students, department meetings, papers to grade, and–lets not forget–the requirement to “publish or perish” expunging “free time” from a professor’s lexicon.” You approach this topic in a way that makes me want to care. To want to read and know more. To want to invest my time. Great job, Ryan!

    • Ryan Ingersoll
      July 23, 2015 at 2:34 pm

      Thanks, Becky! Maybe I am not so bad at a pitch!

  2. July 22, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    I was hooked from the title! I love this idea. I really like your bridge analogy and encouraging practitioners to strip down their practice to improve it. I think this is a really empowering stance and focuses on why to do something, rather than providing a tight structure for how to do something. There is room for creativity and ownership in this model. I look forward to hearing more about your plan for support for this idea.

    • Ryan Ingersoll
      July 23, 2015 at 2:35 pm

      Thanks, Ellen. I love to use analogies. I often need to create them just so I understand.

  3. July 27, 2015 at 6:13 pm

    Ryan – I like that you consider the most appropriate use of faculty time here. It shows that you are in tune with your collegial environment. And, the two part approach to PD, the what and the why, seem to move in the right direction! Speaking of analogies, this one was my fav… “No more set of tools paired with help sheets packaged like take-and-bake pizza.” Yes!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

css.php