A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change

A New Culture of Learning Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change The twenty first century is a world in constant change In A New Culture of Learning Doug Thomas and John Seely Brown pursue an understanding of how the forces of change and emerging waves of interes

  • Title: A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change
  • Author: Douglas Thomas John Seely Brown
  • ISBN: null
  • Page: 324
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • The twenty first century is a world in constant change In A New Culture of Learning, Doug Thomas and John Seely Brown pursue an understanding of how the forces of change, and emerging waves of interest associated with these forces, inspire and invite us to imagine a future of learning that is as powerful as it is optimistic.Typically, when we think of culture, we think ofThe twenty first century is a world in constant change In A New Culture of Learning, Doug Thomas and John Seely Brown pursue an understanding of how the forces of change, and emerging waves of interest associated with these forces, inspire and invite us to imagine a future of learning that is as powerful as it is optimistic.Typically, when we think of culture, we think of an existing, stable entity that changes and evolves over long periods of time In A New Culture, Thomas and Brown explore a second sense of culture, one that responds to its surroundings organically It not only adapts, it integrates change into its process as one of its environmental variables By exploring play, innovation, and the cultivation of the imagination as cornerstones of learning, the authors create a vision of learning for the future that is achievable, scalable and one that grows along with the technology that fosters it and the people who engage with it The result is a new form of culture in which knowledge is seen as fluid and evolving, the personal is both enhanced and refined in relation to the collective, and the ability to manage, negotiate and participate in the world is governed by the play of the imagination.Replete with stories, this is a book that looks at the challenges that our education and learning environments face in a fresh way.

    One thought on “A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change”

    1. I really enjoyed reading this book, which is full of interesting ideas and critiques. The main thesis is that the combination of "unlimited" access to information (i.e the Internet) and an environment with enough structure and boundaries to inspire innovation leads to a "new culture" of learning: playful, exploratory, self-motivated, and *collective*. Here, collective means that we have the opportunity to learn with and from many others, in a peer-based relationship, in contrast to traditional v [...]

    2. Where imaginations play, learning happens"What if, for example, questions were more important than answers? What if the key to learning were not the application of techniques but their invention? What if students were asking questions about things that really mattered to them?" ~ThomasThis might be one of the most thought provoking books I've read about learning in awhiled I read a lot! Thomas explains how play is the key to learning and the most essential skill of the 21st century. This book ex [...]

    3. This 2011 book takes a while to get started, at least for this silicon valley reader who doesn’t need 1/3 of the book to explain how the internet has changed casual, lifestyle learning, especially from decade old research. Much less how engaging entertainment learning has become! Nevertheless, even these anecdotes are mostly enjoyable, and all the points are clearly supported and concise.“We propose reversing the order of things. What if, for example, questions were more important than answe [...]

    4. This is a very short book, only 100 pages long, but the author still manages to talk around the topic instead of delivering. He explains that "kids today" are even more ill-suited to lecture than students in the past. There is a lot of talk about how explicit knowledge, like the exact speed of light, is fine presented in the format of lecture or text, but to really understand a topic you need tacit knowledge. Tacit knowledge comes from experience and interaction. In a learning environment, you g [...]

    5. If doing is learning, there's plenty to learn and do with the ideas Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown present in "A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change." Working with the theme of social/collaborative learning that we've also encountered in many other recent books and articles, Thomas and Brown take us through a stimulating and brief--but never cursory--exploration of "the kind of learning that will define the twenty-first century." And it won't, [...]

    6. The book is a manifesto of BIG IDEAS. While maddeningly vague and sometimes frustratingly nonlinear, the authors' arguments offer a provocative and serious challenge to educators. By highlighting the strong suits of internet-based learning communities, they reveal how effectively (some) students can learn outside the traditional institutions of education. The challenge, as a college teacher, is how to adapt their ideas into a more traditional college classroom, semester, degree plan, etc. One th [...]

    7. The ideas presented point to some ways of integrating a new model of education into the classroom. The power of inquiry, play, and the collective are keys to any good classroom. And for the most part I am on board with what they are saying. But it does become quite clear that this book serves more as a hopeful aspiration blind to the everyday workings of the classroom. I am confident neither author has taught in the elementary school or high school setting, leaving us a book not based in reality [...]

    8. In the book A New Culture of Learning, Thomas and Brown pose the following question: “What happens to learning when we move from the stable infrastructure of the twentieth century to the fluid infrastructure of the twenty-first century, where technology is constantly creating and responding to change?” (17). Through analogy to gaming communities, blogs, and other collectives (content-neutral platforms that are defined by the interactions among participants), the authors present a new vision [...]

    9. This was a throwback to the "Web 2.0" hysteria for me. Reading it in today's context shows how overstated were the claims that the Internet was going to transform culture into a collaborative, understanding utopia. Nevertheless, there are some very helpful concepts in this book, most notably for me the concept of a "collective" as opposed to a "community."

    10. The discussion on how gamers learn was quite interesting. My husband is a gamer and a great learner. A good, fast read.

    11. I think this book works as a proper starting point and introduction to emerging models of collaborative learning in participatory online communities. The authors do well to highlight the potential benefits of self-directed creative inquiry and collaborative problem solving, and they shine a light on the topic of tacit vs. explicit learning, and tease new models of information literacy. I would have liked to see a more meaningful discussion of the practical application of these big ideas, across [...]

    12. This slim volume provided some interesting food for thought regarding education in the 21st century. The culmination is primarily an argument for utilizing gaming as valid learning platform. Although well-reasoned and supported, it failed to address several problems incuding: meeting state and national standards, evaluation and how to deal with students who do not succeed in the gaming culture. What this book does bring to the table is an interesting discussion of tacit vs. explicit learning. Mo [...]

    13. Seely Brown and Thomas hit the nail on the head when they talk about knowledge in the context of education: "In the twenty-first centuryowledge is becoming less a question of 'What is the information?' and more of a 'Where is the information?'" Seely Brown and Thomas replicate a 2006 survey where 18 to 24 year olds attempted to "find Iraq" on a map and 63% were deemed "geographically illiterate" because they could not. However, they added a twist and gave their students a computer instead of a m [...]

    14. About a month ago, Dr. Cliff Harbour, Associate Professor at the University of Wyoming College of Education, recommended that I read Thomas and Brown's book, A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change*. He knew I was constantly questioning the role of education and learning, and he thought this would be an interesting read for me. This book is one of many taking a hard look at education and learning, and finding they are not one in the same. Read more

    15. A New Culture of Learning crystallized my cluster of experiences with the open ed movement--it's a good primer on empowering students to take responsibility for and invest in their education. The authors address peer learning, learning collectives, and the importance of play all in accessible, optimistic prose.It's also prompted me to re-evaluate the structure of my P2PU poetry course< /a> to reflect more self-directed projects and learner buy-in.I think perhaps that the authors are too op [...]

    16. This was a relatively short book with one simple theme; the process of learning is evolving and you can either fight it or take advantage.The new culture of learning is based around the prevalence of information and potential learning resources. Students now learn more from the process of learning and the communities fostered than from the factual information that is fed to them. Students also learn best when they are able to follow their passions. In the words of the author, “Different people [...]

    17. Interesting discussion on the difference between teaching and learning, how the instability of knowledge calls for different learning models, and the call for lifelong learning as a requirement for the times we live in. Also the idea that learning is a participatory process as opposed to a passive data dump from the teacher to the student. Finally, how the internet not only expands our knowledge base but puts us in touch with other people or "collectives" with whom we can learn together. I was n [...]

    18. 2 1/2 stars, really. It's not bad as an introduction to get people thinking about teaching and learning in a new way, with an eye toward leveraging 21st century technology to build 21st century skills. It's light on detail and practical advice, though. That's a problem mainly because when you go on too long about how "our old way of teaching doesn't work" and then offer no serious solutions (hint: turning students loose to play World of Warcraft, without any explicit description of how you're go [...]

    19. A lot of food for thought in this book, recommended by a presenter at the AAC&U Conference. The authors point out the benefits of a social environment for learning and learning that is generated by the community rather than dispensed from the front of a classroom. mmo's are the ideal environment for learning, the authors claim, from which educators can learn a lot. One huge question that they never do answer still remains: how might we get students interested in something that they need to l [...]

    20. This book was so good, I drew heavily from it to write my professional mission statement, which is to: "help create a collective learning environment which encourages innovative and effective use of technology to personalize and cultivate deep, sustained learning throughout the district." . If you are looking for a nuts & bolts or how to book, this is not it. If you are looking for something that will challenge you to rethink your approach to learning and open your eyes to what lies ahead th [...]

    21. I'm going to have to read this one again; there are so many ideas in such a small space. My only wish is that the authors provided more concrete examples to elucidate their stellar ideas on technology, creativity, and the use of the collective for improved learning. This is a source that I will cite many times as a jump-off point."Imagine an environment where evaluation is based on after-action reviews not to determine rewards but to continually enhance performance." (106). A fantastic goal inde [...]

    22. A very interesting point of view about a way about learning. An interesting perspective with quite strong arguments. Although--if this is true, we will see more use of this unusual strategy to learning in the near future. I definitely will look into implementing this type learning process in my classroom. It will be an excellent experiment and who knows? I may get a confirmation to their approachor not.Strongly recommend as a way to change our current teaching methods--or at least try something [...]

    23. As I re-enter an independent school environment, I am fortified by the authors' view of the potential of schools in the 21st century; beyond classrooms, and toward collectives, which are "made up of people who generally share values and beliefs about the world and their place in it, and value participation over belonging, and who engage in a set of shared practices." I look forward to seeing how Thomas and Brown's ideas translate into everyday life in school.

    24. I was supposed to fly to Houston to deliver a "train-the-trainer" workshop. I ended up standing in line at the airport for 4 hours instead. I read this book while waiting and it felt like synchronicity. The ideas being discussed in this book are so in sync with the way Stephanie and I approach training and put together the workshops for Houston. If you teach, if you train, if you think about how people learn, then I think you'll enjoy this book. It's short but packs a lot into its pages.

    25. This book not only examined how learning is not happening in our classrooms but looked at how our students are learning outside our four walls and how we could harness that learning. I loved the connections it made to the gaming industry since I am an avid World of Warcraft player (the MMO game was cited many times). I felt this book was thought-provoking because it not only addressed but gave solutions to our problems as classroom teachers that we face daily with unmotivated students.

    26. I found this book to be terribly shallow and misinformed -- and that was even before I got to the conclusion about the educational value of World of Warcraft! Educators need to always remind themselves that there are important bedrock concepts, theories and histories to teach and learn. Gaining important skills such as teamwork, communication, and problem-solving in the context of an oversimplified, make-believe world is not a learning culture I want to be a part of!

    27. This is a book that is clearly written for people who are not educators. There is nothing really revolutionary for anyone interested in 21st century learning, but it appears to be a good introduction for parents and others who are interested in education. It does generate conversation about where we should be headed in schools, even if it does not really have any concrete plan on how to get there.

    28. A short one, which I was able to listen to on the way to JSConf. I felt as though it only goes skin deep into the problems facing education -- reiterating issues I've heard discussed many times before. The group education concept and self directed learning this one promotes are clearly useful, but falls short of showing how it might help reframe our current systems.

    29. I think they're right in terms of how networked digital media can create a new learning culture. I was hoping for a bit more practical help i.e. how to start building a framework but they are very enamoured with sophisticated online gaming. Still, there's a lot to take in and a second reading will probably be useful for my own purposes.

    30. This book provides a great thought basis behind a learning centred classroom. A place where experimentation, play and questions is valued more than content, efficiency and answers. It links strongly with James Paul Gee's ideas of leveraging the information grid as an extension to the human mind - leaving room for creativity, and as a result - learning. Do read it.

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