1.5 page-clicks of fame.

Written by: Spencer Greenhalgh

Primary Source: Spencer Greenhalgh

WordPress’s Jetpack plugin lets you do a few nifty things with your blog, including getting a pretty good look at how many people are reading what articles. One of the fancier things that it does is (sometimes) let you know what search terms people were using when they ultimately found your website. I know of blogs who have had a lot of fun with this, but since my corner of the blogosphere is a pretty small one, I’m just excited to see that Google pointed someone my way.

This morning, though, Ask.com referred someone to my blog when they typed in a very particular question:

is it true that verbs of thinking with technology are the same, but the nouns are changing?

It was immediately clear to me which post this visitor found, but the phrase still struck me as pretty odd. In fact, at first it sounded like someone had read my post and then was taking to Ask.com to evaluate my argument. That didn’t make very much sense, especially since that still wouldn’t explain why the person clicked on my post to confirm the argument that I made in… well, my post.

Eventually, curiosity got the better of me, and I pasted that same phrase into Google to see if someone else was using similar wording. Lo and behold, Marc Prensky has used those exact same words to describe more or less the same idea as what I was saying in my post. Prensky is the education figure who coined the term “digital native”, which gets thrown around a lot in discussions on educational technology. I’ve also run into his work because he has long been an advocate for games in education: His assertions are often cited in the papers that I read on that same subject.

Now, I don’t know a lot about Prensky, and based on what I do know, I don’t always see eye-to-eye with him, but there’s no getting around the fact that he was using this metaphor long before a quote from Apollo inspired my post. I’ve read over Prensky’s metaphor, and I’m happy to recommend it to you – it encompasses a lot of the same things I was trying to say in my own post (as well as in yesterday’s post).

For me, though, the most fun part of this whole experience is probably the fact that the search phrase that my mystery visitor used was probably the only one in the world that put my blog right next to much more prominent voices in educational technology (not to mention this particular autocorrect):

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Hi there! My name is Spencer Greenhalgh, and I am a student in the Educational Psychology and Educational Technology doctoral program at Michigan State University. I came to Michigan State University with a strong belief in the importance of an education grounded in the humanities. As an undergraduate, I studied French and political science and worked as a teaching assistant in both fields. After graduation, I taught French, debate, and keyboarding in a Utah private school before coming to MSU, where I plan to study how technology can be used to help students connect the humanities with their lives. I have a particular interest in the use of games and simulations to promote ethical reasoning and explore moral dilemmas, but am eager to study any technology that can help students see the relevance of studying language, culture, history, and government.