SXSW EDU 2018 Take Aways
Faculty Development Meeting July 5, 2018 — Honoria Starbuck, Ph.D.
SXSW EDU is an education thought leadership and innovation gathering centered around the Austin Convention Center every spring. I am honored to be on the Programming Advisory Committee of SXSW EDU and SXSW Interactive. Being at SXSW EDU has given me access to great lessons and experiences from on-the-ground visionaries in education.
SXSW EDU has a YouTube channel where you can see the keynotes and other aspects of the conference. https://www.youtube.com/user/SXSWEDU/videos
Here are some of the highlights from my days at SXSW EDU this spring.
Inspiring: Michael J. Sorrell – We Over Me
Leading Question: If we were going to design a school for today, for today’s students, what would that look like?
Sorrell set out to design an institution for today’s students: less of a college and more of a movement. The school’s ethos, “We over me,” is geared toward building a community-based mindset in students. Its values include lead from wherever you are and practice leading every day, love a cause larger than yourself and devote your life to it, leave places better than you found them, choose the harder right over the easier wrong, and accept that people can be your kind without being your color. The school’s core beliefs are that poverty is evil, debt is bad, everyone can learn, and next is greater than now.
https://youtu.be/snE6nBlwSxY Review of reality based education and the future: 48:36
Alarming: dana boyd - What hath we Wrought?
Leading Questions: What is media literacy if no one trusts the media? How can we navigate weaponized information?
boyd urged attendees to “help young people understand epistemological differences.” Epistemology refers to the nature of knowledge and how beliefs about what’s right or wrong are constructed. One question that boyd believes is valuable for teachers to explore with students is: “Why do people from different worldviews interpret the same piece of information differently?” Boyd also suggested that some of the adolescents driven to extremist online communities do so out of a struggle to find their identity and make sense of the world around them.
https://www.edsurge.com/news/2018-03-07-danah-boyd-how-critical-thinking-and-media-literacy-efforts-are-backfiring-today What role can educator’s play? 37:18 – 46:50
Mind Blowing: Cometry – Slam Poetry and Stand-up Comedy
Leading Question: How can we teach leadership values through entertaining performances?
COMETRY is an exciting, energetic new art form that blends performance poetry and stand up comedy into clean, clever, observational entertainment. Each performance is designed to highlight the similarities, habits, and traits that we all share, but often go unnoticed. Every COMETRY piece or "coem" does a few things: it tells a story, raises awareness, or delivers an inspirational message, all while making you laugh.
Cometry wants students to be the type of leaders that others naturally gravitate towards. G.R.A.V. is the acronym Cometry uses to convey four values they believe apply to all sorts of skills necessary while in school: becoming a leader, appreciating diversity, preventing bullying, etc…
We use exercises where students get to experience the benefit of being slightly outside their comfort zone as we believe and share that this is where growth happens.
As humans, we tend to judge and put up barriers. We use coems like, "The Boy, The Myth, The Legend" (Michael Jackson) to exemplify the value of making the effort to learn about others in order to understand them. Once we understand others we can begin to respect them.
Great leaders don’t only make the effort to research and respect others, they are approachable and open to others learning about them. Through comedy and poetry we exemplify this personally.
Every special leader has the ability to make others in their community/team better. We share the power of validation in its many forms and how students can use present day tools, like texting, to enhance the abilities and confidence of their peers.
ACTIVITY: Create a Mashup Activity.
In your table team mash up 2 or more of the concepts from these take aways and create a combination activity to engage and educate students.
1. What is the Leading Question for your activity? - Or- What is the objective of your activity?
2. What 2 or more ideas are you mashing up?
3. Create instructions for your activity?
4. How will you evaluate the outcome of the activity? By what rubric can you measure what students learned from your activity?