Led by Dr. Mimi Ito, and a very large team of researchers, this three year ethnographic study documented over 5000 hours of online interactions and interviewing over 800 adolescent and young adults across the U.S. What they found is that there are different types of online interactions.
Here is a break down of these interactions:
(Note: This video was downloaded from http://www.youtube.com/user/machiela – this was not created by Dr. Ito, et al. or the MacArthur Foundation).
Please see resources below for official written reports and book
The pedagogical challenge is to figure out how to design curriculum and learning spaces in the classroom (both face to face and virtually), that leverage these online learning practices as a way to build disciplinary knowledge and networks.
Digital tools can enable us to do that but it requires an understanding of how to identify specific learning outcomes, assess prior understandings of the learner, and design spaces for learners to explore and move back and forth between hanging out, messing around and geeking out. For example, using Common Core and state standards along with students’ interests helps to identify desired learning outcomes. Learning is designed using project based learning models that are based on problems and essential questions that are relevant and connected to student interests. These project based curricular units incorporate differentiated forms of ongoing assessment strategies (e.g. small quizzes, individual and group tasks and challenges, deadlines and presentations leading up to the culminating product).