Re-reading and gleaning new meaning

I re-read Barab & Duffy (2000) again. Each time I read it, and I’ve re-read this chapter several times in the last three years, I get a slightly different reading of it. Before, my focus in reading it had been on the psychological–learning theories and how they had changed over time. This time, I was more interested in the anthropological aspect, particularly the idea of a learner developing an identity as a member of a community and being able to motivate, shape, and give meaning to it.

It is crucial, from an instructional perpective, to be able to engage learners in authentic tasks that does not bracket or bound the practice field off from the broader community of practice. I think blogs have the potential to make the discourse in KF more authentic in the sense that we are developing our identities in our blogs, which tell our narratives, or casual accounts of our experiences. I like that this process could possibly enable learners to construct or even co-construct some common cultural and historical heritage, because I don’t think learners bring that with them necessarily, to a bounded learning community or a practice field.


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