I just finished watching Ewan's video presentation that he gave to a large group of student teachers in Scotland the morning following our recent skypecast (we're not just podcasting anymore ;-)). Ewan does an outstanding job of explaining the evolution of the internet from Web 1.0 (read only) to Web 2.0 (read/write). He also surveys blogging and podcasting and discusses what they are and how to effectively use them in an educational context.
There were four points that really struck me.
(1) Ewan's description of himself as a "digital native" is concretely demonstrated with pictures and discussion of his recent presentation at Les Blogs, the blogger conference held in France in December 2005. Everyone one was blogging on wireless laptops while listening to Ewan speak. Ewan, simultaneously is blogging himself and taking in the instantaneous reactions of his audience so he can modify his presentation while in progress. You've got to see it to believe it.
(2) How do we verify the worth of a source information? We used to, when taking a book out of the library, look at the list of people who had taken it out before us. The longer the list and the more recently the book was taken out is a way for all the previous readers to quietly offer a recommendation. Blogging and linking to sources does the same thing live and instantaneously.
(3) INTELLIGENCE = KNOWLEDGE + MANNERS (Brilliant.)
(4) At the end, Ewan lists the nine instructional strategies from Robert Marzano's book Classroom Instruction That Works. My dept. has been focusing on implementing each of these strategies, one each year, as part of our BPRIME Initiative. Ewan brilliantly illustrates how each strategy is effectively implemented in the classroom by weaving read/write tools into our classroom practice. This last piece in his presentation was simply breathtaking.
Chapeau, mon ami. ;-)