Remix, Remake, Curate

Learning with the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, Tar River Writing Project, & The Poetry Project


What is a MOOC?

MOOCs are “massive open online courses.” Ours is completely open and free of charge to anyone who wants to participate, and we like to think of it more as a “collaboration” than a course. We will provide much inspiration, guidance, and feedback for young people and their adult learning partners, but there are no determined outcomes for this experience.  This is a collaborative learning journey that encourages participants to individualize their experiences.

What is a MOOC?; courtesy of Dave Cormier

How will the MOOC work?

You can join the MOOC by signing up here. Once you do, you’ll get regular emails telling you what’s going on in the MOOC. You’ll also want to check the blog and our G+ community for updates. There will also be live events, like Google hangouts and Twitter chats. If you already blog or have your own space for writing and sharing, feel free to use that space and provide link your content through G+ and Twitter.

Is there an instructor?

There are four teams of facilitators (a scientist, spoken word poet, and teachers across grade levels) plus leadership from the organizations who will be guiding this MOOC and offering up suggestions for “makes” designed to get you creating something — tangible or intangible. Sometimes, we make things. Sometimes, we make meaning. We also believe in peer learning and hope that many small groups will form with their own group guides.

How do I contact you?

General inquiries can be directed to

How much time will this MOOC take?

The MOOC will run September 19-October 11 and April 2-May 1. For each two-week Make Cycle, facilitators will lead a guided make and support you as you engage in your own make activities and your reflections afterward. You can spend as much or as little time as you want on the MOOC.  Everything is optional, and we hope that everyone will feel comfortable customizing the experience to their own needs. Having said that, if you want to participate fully in every activity for each Make Cycle, you could easily spend 10 or more hours a week on it.

How was this MOOC designed?

Facilitators have used the Connected Learning principles as a framework for this MOOC.  Connected Learning is a research and design-based approach to education. It is based on the learning principles of being interest-powered, peer-supported, and academically oriented. It is based on the design principles of being production-centered, openly networked, and having a shared purpose. And it espouses core values of equity, social connection, and full participation.


Connected Learning infographic; courtesy of Connected Learning TV

If this is free, who’s paying for it?

This MOOC is funded by an a National Science Foundation (NSF) Intersections partnership grant awarded to the National Writing Project and the Association for Science-Technology Education Centers (ASTC).

Who’s leading this MOOC?

A group of scientists, teachers, and poets from the Tar River Writing Project, the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, and Poetry Project are setting the stage, but you make the magic happen.

Is credit being offered for this MOOC?

No formal credit is being offered through the MOOC; however, you can explore local options for obtaining credit through your district or other institution. Let us know if you would like documentation of your participation.

What is a “make”?

A “make,” as we use the term, is any project or work where you are creating something. In this MOOC, we draw heavily from ideas from the maker movement, which emphasizes creation and empowerment. In this MOOC, possible “makes” could include experiments, poems, maps, photo stories, etc. that communicate science learning and literacy in multiple modes or media.

What is “open”?

Open means different things to different people, but open licensing means that content is licensed in a way that it is shareable, remixable, and redistributable by others as long as the source is cited. #trwpConnect is licensed under a CC BY license. This Digital Is article discusses why open matters.

How can I open license my own work?

As a content creator, you have the choice whether to open license your own creations. If you do nothing, the default “all rights reserved” copyright applies, making your work not easily shareable.

If you would like to share your work under an open license, you first need to choose a license. Some people prefer CC BY, a license that requires only attribution of the original source, because it is the most open, but you can use this tool to choose a license as well.

Then you just have to let people know that your work is open. You can do this in any of these ways:

  • Write your copyright notice, name, and license on your work, e.g. “Copyright Joe Smith, licensed under CC BY.”
  • Use the CC license tool and copy the HTML code they supply into the web site where you post your work. (This is a little more sophisticated way to let people know your work is license. It provides metadata to search engines like Google so they know your work is open as well.)
  • Use a posting site that supports open licensing, like the #clmooc Make Bank, Curriki, Slideshare, Vimeo, Flickr, etc., and indicate there that your work is open licensed.

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