Digital Learning Day: Not Everything Digital

This is part of an ongoing series of discussions I am having with my good friend, Anna Smith, about digital literacies. (You can follow the entire thread of our back and forth talks here.) The other day, Anna asked the question of “where isn’t digital” as she considered a quote by David Wees about the importance of digital literacies in a technology/media-rich world.

Here is an infographic that she created to make her point:

I could have gone in any number of directions here in response to her post, but I found myself thinking quite literally about the areas in my life when things are not digital, and how wonderful that is. It reminded me that technology can’t replace everything, and some experiences still require tangible connections (family) or intangible moments (dreaming).

Here is my infographic response:
Where isn't digital response

And, as per usual, I did some reflection via a webcomic about my thinking:
Reflection This Isnt Digital

Peace (in the learning and sharing),



Digital Writing: Jogging the Web with Anna

Jogweb Conversation Site
Anna Smith and I have been working on a digital dialogue about digital writing, and some friends and readers have asked for us to provide a more coherent “path” to those conversations. That makes sense. You should know our intention is to eventually create a larger curated resource at the National Writing Project Digital Is site, but for now — in the midst of our give and take — it is all just a series of blog posts at Digital Is. I created this Jog the Web as a way to create a sequential “path” so far, so if you are just jumping in to the discussions, you can track where we have been.

Jump to the Jog the Web project

As always, we invite you to join the conversations over at Digital Is.

Peace (in the sharing),


Responding to Anna: A Screencast Challenge

Anna Smith and I are in the midst of a “digital conversation” about digital writing. Most of this is taking place at the National Writing Project’s Digital Is site, but I am also sharing my end of the activities here. We’re moving across platforms and strategies as part of our conversation, and adding a reflective piece to our role as writer/composer.

The other day, Anna shared a video screencast, and challenged me to do the same. Here it is:

And here is my reflection, which I am doing in comic form:
Reflection on Screencasting with Anna
Peace (in the writing),


Digital Conversations: Responding to Anna Responding to Me

Anna Smith and I have started up a cross-platform conversation about what it means to write and compose in the digital world. This stems from our participation in Digital Writing Month. We wanted to continue, and nurture and model, how discussions might unfold about the idea of technology, by using technology, and documenting the experience (including how we are making our end of the conversation). I started it off with a video that talked about a time when I realized that technology and digital media was affecting my view of writing, and Anna responded the other day with her own video. (You can see the entire threads of the conversation as blog posts at the National Writing Project Digital Is site.)

I decided to add another layer to how I wanted to respond to her, so I took her video and popped it into Vialogues, which allows you to comment at different parts of the video. We’re inviting you, and everyone else, to be part of our conversation, either at the Digital Is site or at the Vialogues, or at either of our blogs (Anna’s blog is here).

Here is the embedded Vialogue:

Peace (in the chatting),


After Digital Writing Month: A Continued Conversation

(Note: When Digital Writing Month came to a close, Anna Smith and I decided that we wanted to keep the conversations about digital writing going. Our plan is to do it multimodally — using various platforms to engage in a discussion about the ways technology is influencing our perceptions of literacy. We’re doing this as a series of blog posts over at the National Writing Project’s Digital Is site, and when we are done, we will collect them all into a Resource at Digital Is. — Kevin)

Creating Conversation: Composing in the Digital Age

One of the many potentials of the shifts in envisioning writing in multimodal spaces is the chance for new conversations — for stretching out thinking beyond your own physical space and joining in discussions about the changes now underfoot. During November 2012’s Digital Writing Month, educators and writers and others from across many teaching levels and learning domains — from public schools to college universities and beyond — were engaged in a deep exploration of digital tools and ideas, and many participants shared reflective practice on what those digital choices were doing to their conceptions of writing.

As two explorers during Digital Writing Month, Kevin Hodgson and I, Anna Smith, have decided to continue that conversation through consideration of digital literacies and contemporary composition by coordinating a multimodal conversation that begins with the idea of Digital Writing Month and then stretches outwards from there. Kevin, a sixth grade teacher in Western Massachusetts and a member of the National Writing Project, and I, Anna, a secondary teacher, teacher educator and co-author of Developing Writers: Teaching and Learning in the Digital Age, will be jumping, leaping and diving from digital media platform to digital media platform in their conversation, as we first reflect on literacies in the 21st Century and then ask, and respond to, each others’ questions.

We also encourage YOU to join us in these conversations. Take part in this digital tapestry of ideas and reflections! You can find these conversations on our Digital Is blog posts: Kevin’s Blog Posts and Anna’s Blog Posts. Feel free to comment and respond in kind. We will then be curating these conversations, including YOUR contributions in a Resource Page. Kevin is up first, so check out his blog to see how this conversation gets started!


Here was the first salvo in our conversations. I created a video piece for Anna, remembering an experience that opened my eyes to the possibilities of online writing, and I end by asking her to respond. But you can, too, either here or at Digital Is.

And part of what we are doing is reflecting on our experiences. I created a comic reflection of what it means to use video as your canvas for this kind of talk.
Reflecting on a Video Conversation

Peace (in the convo),