When mentoring our pre-service and in-service teachers we need to describe and model both research-based and clinically tested best practices, and demonstrate how these best practices can be applied in the real (i.e. physical) and virtual (online) classroom. Accordingly in this section of the blog we will describe how the internet can serve as a supplemental resource for teaching and teacher training. In this post we will discuss the difference between the first generation of the internet, web 1.0, and its second generation, web 2.0.
The internet first created in the 1960’s was to serve as a powerful search engine or encyclopedia to locate information. For a brief history of the internet click onto this url:http://www.walthowe.com/navnet/history.html At that time the internet was conceived as a gigantic information storage location in cyberspace which the student, teacher or researcher could easily access. This data storage repository was a static structure; it was neither very interactive nor multi-dimensional.
The original internet, later termed web 1.0, was a data source for finding information. It did not have the capacity to interact with the user in a meaningful way. For example the user could not ask the internet clarifying or following up questions. Hence it’s interactivity was limited. What was required was a new type of internet, one that had the capacity to (a) answer the user's questions (b) and transform its data for collaborative writing and knowledge construction. The second generation of the internet, now termed web 2.0, offered the user a set of software tools for data restructuring, data analysis, collaborative writing, knowledge construction, and dissemination.
This transformation in technology from Web 1.0 to Web 2.0 has significant implications for teaching, learning and teacher training and mentoring. These new internet tools now provide a new platform through which instructors and learners can explore their topics, ideas, and insights not only in the physical classroom but when they are in disparate locations as well.
Accordingly, the teacher can use a white interactive board to access the internet, and in some schools students have their own computers to access the internet, do their own research individually and collaboratively. In addition, teachers and teacher mentors can communicate best practices online through the formation of their own communities of practice, CoP’s.
On the next post we will share a video describing the difference between web 1.0 and web 2.0