26th May

Thoughts and practical ideas in the run up to the Sydney Gardens project, and the nature of collaboration
Tuesday 26 of May half term and I wonder what I’m doing this early in the morning because I could be lying in bed at today is first day of the collaborative creation of a media scape in Sydney Gardens first of four days and this may well be my penultimate climb up the hill this audio blog is sounding more and more like a big brother sort of thing but I did read in one of the articles that I was looking at that that sort of video diary is going to become popular and it does fit in many ways with the work that I’m doing in school getting students who aren’t so keen on writing to keep a record of how you do it without producing reams and reams and reams and reams which nobody is going to listen to that is that temporal spatial textual thing again searching for the relevant information and I certainly feel that way with the research that I’ve been doing the more that I look at the more there seems to be to look at how do you collect collate all that information to select what you need from it which leads me on to the beauty of twitter as a way of getting ideas out and collecting ideas back in very quick networking and links it is almost like neural pathways that each each of us is one neurone or one fibre passing the neurons along and it’s that network of millions of electronic pulses that make up the systems of our brains and you bring that up onto a larger scale and millions of brains together all firing information

I am wishing that I had a bit more of the practicality organised for this week a bigger list of things to do contingency plans I suppose I got things like photoshop ping-pong and the endless landscape I can always fall back on my tried and tested lessons but I want to be on the edge really I want to be experimenting maybe I need a bigger list of things that we can do outside frisbee was the idea that came to be yesterday get back to something very real catching a frisbee

I also had some good ideas yesterday about how to collect audio from the students one thing would be to get them to sit in the Park absolutely silent and absolutely still and just make a record of all the things that they can hear around them that might have to be written and then they come and speak that written diary and that’s heading interestingly towards poetry perhaps but more towards the sort of art of Richard Long walks that he does the walks and poetry, walks poetry recording and I was thinking from that of the media scape itself that we are creating is a little bit like Richard Long’s photographs of his walks we don’t do the walk he does the walk and a photograph is his record of what he has done his photograph or his map and in the same way we do the week the group of us and the media scape becomes the history of that process that we can pass on and let others experience

There is just one of the things running around in my brain at the moment which is the nature of collaboration both my meetings with well all the meetings I’ve had with other people when I have been talking have really focused my attention and the ideas have flowed much better through collaboration and through talking with other people that they have with these early morning rambles when I have been talking ideas over to someone else I can apparently talking a much more succinct fashion because I have got to communicate with them what my ideas are this sort of goes to the root of education in many ways because of the child has to talk about what it is that they are doing articulate it they will get a much clearer sense of it than if they had just listened to someone sprouting it at the front of a class and I was thinking about in terms of pedagogy of learning group work getting people to talk together it’s amazing how just 10 or 15 minutes with Emma on Friday produced a raft of ideas that might have taken me weeks to get to on my own but also the clarity of talking over my ideas to someone so it’s coming straight out of me rather than even just on to paper the paper bit becomes a craft but the talking straight means that it is coming from somewhere quite deep inside and I occasionally wish I had recorded my conversations with people so that I have got a handle afterwards on it on what it was that I said because it seems pretty clear to me at the time

Of course the difficulty from my point of view is that as a teacher I am sort of outside of their circle and I have got to break myself into that circle to begin with before discussion can happen before we start to work as a group with me in it so often as my experience with this past group has been they don’t say a bloody thing and I’m completely helpless I can’t do a thing unless they do I suppose that’s the downside of it