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Garden City Collegiate 4 December 2009

Page history last edited by Darren Kuropatwa 12 years, 11 months ago

OLÉ: Orchestrating a Learning Ecology

or Learning the Tango


The Tango Lesson

At the end of the day, there is only one way to dance tango: the way YOU like to dance it. And there is only one style: the one YOU choose to be your style; because a tango dancer never copies, never imitates, never conforms to an established pattern, never follows the trends, never talks about his dancing. A tango dancer dances .... out of a finite number of recognizable body positions for the couple, it is possible to improvise a countless number of patterns, steps and figures.


The 3 Steps of Tango

First, a demo

AP Calculus AB: Without Bound ('08-'09)

Applied Math 40S (Winter '09)

Pre-Cal 40S (Winter '09)


The Big Picture 

How Will I Orchestrate It This Time?

The Next Movement 

One of the understated facts of dancing Argentine Tango is the availability of four feet and four cardinal directions where the couple can move. Simply put, there are only three steps in Tango: the Side step, the Forward step and the Back step.

With these three steps a couple could dance in straight lines or in a box, going forward, sideways, backwards, sideways, etc., etc.


What is a Learning Ecology?

Blogging, both personally and professionally, always brings to mind three metaphors for me: conductor, choreographer and gardener ...




An ecology is an environment that fosters and supports the creation of communities ... A learning ecology is an environment that is consistent with (not antagonistic to) how learners learn ... The Instructor plays the role of gardener.

What are the needs of a learning ecology?
Learning/knowledge is more than static content. It's a dynamic, living, and evolving state. Within an ecology, a knowledge sharing environment should have the following components:


• Informal, not structured. The system should not define the learning and discussion that happens. The system should be flexible enough to allow participants to create according to their needs.

• Tool-rich - many opportunities for users to dialogue and connect.

• Consistency and time. New communities, projects and ideas start with much hype and promotion...and then slowly fade. To create a knowledge sharing ecology, participants need to see a consistently evolving environment.

• Trust. High, social contact (face to face or online) is needed to foster a sense of trust and comfort. Secure and safe environments are critical for trust to develop.

• Simplicity. Other characteristics need to be balanced with the need for simplicity. Great ideas fail because of complexity. Simple, social approaches work most effectively. The selection of tools and the creation of the community structure should reflect this need for simplicity.

• Decentralized, fostered, connected...as compared to centralized, managed, and isolated.

• High tolerance for experimentation and failure

(George Seimens: source)


Before the First Class — The Forward Step

Thinks and Tools


Branding: class tag and image


Organization: labels or categories


First Post: what will you say? (sample)


(more details here)

Building the Blog


Blogger (to write the blog)

• your email address

Google Translation Gadget

Cluster Map
Answer Tips Widget

SITMO Equation Editor
Add Labels Widget

Google Calendar Viewer



Digital Ethics — Step Forward, Step Aside

4 Points That Have Served Me Well


(1) blogspaces = classroom spaces


(2) personal privacy


(3) your future self & your digital identity


(4) thoughtful linking


(sample post)

(create your own playlist or use mine)


The Tango: Stepping Aside

Organizational Mechanics ...


Signing them Up

... adding authours


And Keeping Track

... The Scribe List

... and some Nuts & Bolts


Get Rid of the Navbar


#b-navbar { height:0px; visibility:hidden }
body { position: relative; top: -32px; }


Adding Permanent Links


... and other elements to your layout in Blogger.


La Marca

The subtle delay between the motion of the dancers is what creates the much sought after feline elegance of the dancing couple. You can't walk like a cat because you only have two legs. An embraced couple, combining both sets of legs can.

In essence, understanding the concept of "I move, then he moves," if you are a woman, or "she moves, then I move," if you are a man, is a significant step towards developing the natural sway and sensual motion characteristic of the Argentine Tango.



Your Tango — My Backstep

Food For Thought


Kids: they dance before they learn there is anything that isn't music.

~William Stafford


- Learning to Swim


"the Tango begins with the posture and finishes in the legs". There is an anatomical and a psychological reason for paying attention to posture. From an anatomical point of view, finding a comfortable embrace helps the enjoyment of the dance.

The psychological aspect involves a positive winning attitude. The dancers must believe they are the best they can be.

~Pablo Pugliese


Sample Letters to Parents



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