The Classroom Unconference in #HIST2809
Yesterday, I decided that I would turn this morning's lecture in HIST2809a, The Historian's Craft (Carleton University) into an unconference. The rationale and plan for that may be found here: http://electricarchaeology.ca/2012/10/25/the-classroom-unconference/. I started with a Flashmob
- The point of this clip was to suggest that historians, when they work together in novel ways - emergent ways, even - can have an impact far outside of academe. When musicians play in the concert hall, they are playing to a well-informed, self-selected audience. By infiltrating the public space this way, they reach and enrich far more people. An unconference, I said, can be a bit like that. Especially if we're using social media in tandem. And so, I encouraged everyone to use #hist2809 throughout the class.
- So I began by soliciting ideas about what we wanted to talk about. Then a show of hands to decide what would go on the schedule. In good Detritus-like fashion, I tallied by rough categorization: 1, 2, many, lots:
- And we built a schedule.
- It's a big lecture hall. We just used the four corners as our breakout spaces. Sorry for the blurry photos; my hands shake. Session 1: military history, historical fiction & movies; good websites for history tools; video games. Session 2: history in museums; history as propaganda; forgeries; urban history as folk history. And so, we were off:
- I invited the wider world to comment on and participate. At points, I would stop everything and draw attention to the big screen at the front of the room, where Twitter rolled on inexorably...
- Thank you Kaitlin! Full disclosure: Kaitlin was a TA for me in an earlier iteration of HIST2809.
- I would wander between the different groups, offering suggestions, riffing on what was being discussed, suggesting things for the students to look into.
Did you find this story interesting? Be the first to like or comment.