I’ve been working with BIS and Becta quite a bit recently on the Learning Revolution project, which is all about improving access to informal adult learning – that is, learning which doesn’t generally mean a qualification. So, stuff like book groups, choirs, yoga classes, basic computer skills. That sort of thing.
One part of this project was helping to manage the delivery of a DirectGov hosted website, ably put together by the Dextrous Web team, which provided an interactive calendar and map for the Festival of Learning throughout October. It’s a lovely looking site with a load of interesting features. We also have been running an online community, on good old Ning, for providers of this type of learning to get together and share knowledge and information.
But there remains a question over how a national, permanent directory of informal learning might work, and what it would look like. To try and find out, Becta have launched a competition, called Teach us a Lesson.
It’s based on Show us a Better Way, and allows ideas to be submitted from anybody. These will be vetted for filth and stupidity, before going live on the site, and other users will be able to comment and rate them.
As the ideas flow in, we’ll be organising an unconference in November, to get everyone together to connect and collaborative on ideas that fit well together. After that, the best projects will be judged, with a pot of £25,000 being split amongst up to five projects, so that prototypes can be delivered by March 2010 at the latest.
If you have any ideas on how such a directory might work – which could be anything from “I think it ought to be blue!” to “I know the SQL syntax we need to make this work” (I know, I know, I haven’t a clue what I’m talking about…) – then do submit them into the site and be a part of this exciting initiative.