One of the features of web 2.0 that educators have still not really taken advantage of (in droves anyway) is the opportunities it provides for both themselves and their students to step out of the web 1.0 world where we are basically consumers, into the web 2.0 world where we are authors and creators.
The push technology of web 1.0 ensured that most of us saw the internet as a great big library, full of up-to-date information, searchable, not always trustworthy or correct, and copy-able. We have talked about developing in ourselves and in our students critical literacy skills that enable them to select information which they can then re-purpose in projects and assignments.
Web 2.0 provides an abundance of tools that enable educators and students to become creators of knowledge, to move from their basic understanding of a topic gained through web 1.0 technologies, into a space where they create knowledge and share with others. It is this that will lead to the development of 21st Century Skills, particularly Creativity and Innovation. The literacies we develop here are essential for 21st century learning.
The web 2.0 activities can be both collaborative and individual and include
- creation of a wiki
- conversion of a set of photos, showing the progress of an activity, into a photo journal
- blogging on a regular basis
- creation of podcasts
- creation of e-books
It is important to realise that skills in these areas are not an overnight achievement. Like anything else, proficiency relies on the activity being repeated several times, the skills being honed to a point of efficiency, and the final outcome being high quality.