cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo shared by Zoriah

Step right up on August 26, the launch date for the Headless Open Digital Storytelling course from your freaks and friends at ds106. The idea is to create an experience for people who are interested in participating in a digital storytelling open course that has:

  • no video lectures.
  • no superstar professors… in fact there is no proferssor, no teacher.
  • no sprawling discussion forums.
  • no grades, badges, or certificates.

What we are going to do is to publish every Monday a suggested set of activities and creative assignments that you are free to do as you see fit or interested. These are republications of previous materials from ds106 courses taught at the University of Mary Washington since 2011, but this time around, there are no registered students, just the open folks.

You will set up and learn how to manage your own digital space- it can be a Domain of Your Own (Reclaim one now!) or a hosted blog from any of a handful of free services. You don;t have to do this now, it is the task for the first 2 weeks of ds106 bootcamp to get your site set up and customized.

But if you do want to jump in early, register your site at http://ds106.us/signup. A group of folks is getting warmed up with IamTalkyTina’s August GIF Challenge, and we are going to coordinate some more of these during the course with the folks from GIFfight (Stop cringing, Sandy Brown Jensen, the class will not be all GIFs)

You can see the syllabus now– for an idea of what might be on a week’s list, see the ones from the Spring 2013 UMW class.

A group of volunteers has signed up (and its still wide open) to be a “helper” for a week– not a teacher, but just present and public sharing, recognizing the work that is going on that week. They may choose to run a Google Hangout, a twitter chat, a live radio show, or just blog and tweet alot.

Want to help out? Lots of ways:

What we hope happens from people who have done ds106 before is that you convince, persuade, arm twist your colleagues, friends, enemies, students into joining this brigade with you. Let’s expand our base of ds106 newbies. Bring a group along.

cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo shared by Vern Hart

As a related issue, we heard today from high school visual arts teacher Shaun McMillan:

Hello, I begin my second year of teaching Graphic Design at Hargrave High School next week and I am very happy to have come across DS106. I will definitely have my students do some of these assignments as soon as they get up to speed on using the production tools (mostly photoshop). There are two issues/question though that I would appreciate some guidance on.

Q1: High schools, or at least mine, block social networks. They did unblock my hosted wordpress page drawalot.com but they block most blogs, twitter, facebook, and G+. I would still like for my students to be a part of the community and communicate but will they be able to participate much if they are limited to posting and commenting on my hosted site (except of course from their data plan mobile devices or from home)?

Q2: Open could be a poisonous word in a high school atmosphere. They much prefer the walled gardens of creativity stifling administration approved LMS’. What kind of warning or parent letter opt in or paper work should I have students/parents sign to both A) introduce the idea of students participating in an open community and B) cover my lower exterior?

Got ideas? leave Shaun a comment

This is a good chance to emphasize that there is no “right” or “must” way to do ds106. It is perfectly fine for Shaun’s students not to be all in the twitter mix– more important is getting them into a mode of creating and writing about their work on the shared blog he is going to use.

So if you come along on your own or with a group, you are free to modify or customize the experience as you see interesting or useful– we are not here to tell you how to do ds106. We will offer some suggestions for what to do to improve your digital creation and expression tools, but you can bend.fold, spindle,etc the experience to be a better fit for yourself or maybe students. There is no One ds106 Way.

The experience is what you craft, not us. It can be colorful

cc licensed ( BY NC ND ) flickr photo shared by Patricia van Casteren

But do not look for us to tell you what to do. Except start doing it August 26.

You may never stop. Ask Shannon, who took ds106 as a student at UMW who is back doing this on her own. Or Rochelle, a 3M Professional, who has been lit on fire with her ds106 creative work. We have a Talking Doll who will encourage you.

This video should explain all of it

Or not.

But if you have looked at ds106, heard about it at a conference or from a colleague, and hesitated to put time into it, now is the time. There is no obligation, no shame. Just be there.

Be headless. Starting August 26- look for first announcements at http://ds106.us/category/the-site/fall-2013-headless/

cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by Maria

The post "Getting Closer to Headless #ds106" was originally scraped from the bottom of the pickel barrel at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2013/08/getting-closer-to-headless-ds106/) on August 14, 2013.

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Getting Closer to Headless #ds106 by CogDogBlog is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 License.