Tuesday, November 11, 2014

#WeirdEd Week 31- Narwhal

 Last week's #WeirdEd was amazing. A smart moderator would take that popularity and momentum and parlay it into another Big Important Topic*. A smart moderator would see the credibility having a NASA engineer on gained his chat and write more of that, because the audience gained from that single chat would love more of that.
But that's so not what #WeirdEd is. #WeirdEd is my baby. It's the anti-chat. Our format might be the same as many other chats but that is where the similarities end. #WeirdEd should be a chat that people who take edchats way too seriously scoff at. #WeirdEd should turn some people off. I'm fine with that. At some point being too Big Tent means losing all connection to reality and specificity and the real audience. I love our ability to tackle all sorts of subjects, from serious to ridiculous. I love that all of you come play with me when I want to take us to Mars or Ferguson.
But #WeirdEd is founded on being goofy. Making education fun and silly and, well, weird. We are at a place in the school year where everything is looking bleak and long and tough. Classrooms are dragging. Students are dragging. Chats are dragging. It's time to mix things up. It's time to challenge ourselves.
I need a challenge.
How does a moderator challenge him/herself? By picking the dopiest topic possible and figuring out how to make it work in an educational context. I love the challenge. #WeirdEdE moderator Lauren (@LTaylorELA) tossed off what might have been a joke when we were talking about this week's chat. "Narwhals."

Narwhals. Narwhals have nothing to do with education. There is no obvious connection a normal person could draw from the narwhal to the classroom which makes it a perfect #WeirdEd topic. What a fun writing game for me! What a fun thought game for you. There will be no obvious answers this week. Bumper sticker edutweets will be impossible because no one (as far as I know) has ever tried to make narwhals an educational topic.
How well will this go? I have no idea. This might be the #WeirdEd that crashes and burns. I might be skewered on my own horn**. But I know if I can generate good questions the #WeirdEd family will bring your A game and give answers that surprise everyone.
Let's do this.

*seriously, this week was going to be Military Families and School, which is a Big Important Topic I want to do, and is even timely with Veteran's Day, but when I sat down to write it I had nothing. It'll happen, just not today.

**I know it's a tooth. It looks like a horn. It's a horn.

(BTW- You can buy that amazing Shark v Narwhal thing at the top for me for my birthday here)

1 comment:

  1. This is a magical quest, Doug. I look forward to its awesomeness.