FutureTense: Open Source Jewish Learning

The Future of Jewish Learning Online


  • What does "open source Jewish learning" look like?
  • What does it mean for individual Jewish learners?
  • What does it look like from the content producer's perspective?
  • What are different models for self-organized and participant-driven learning?
  • What are implications for the Jewish community?


CK-12 Flexbook Tool: A place where you can find and customize content
Connectivism and Connective Knowledge Online Course 2009 course wiki
Curriki, a web site where the community shares and collaborates on free and open source curriculum
EdTalkTalk - Collaborative Open Webcasting Community: a community of educators interested in discussing and learning about the uses of educational technology. We webcast several live shows each week.
G-dcast: is committed to raising basic Jewish literacy, sparking conversations about Jewish ideas, and - hopefully - revolutionizing Judaism by helping people crack open texts they may have never tried to read before
Jewish Events in Second Life calendar
Jewish Open Source Curriculum Project and blog, Tzvi Daum
K12 Online Conference 2009: a conference by educators for educators around the world interested in integrating emerging technologies into classroom practice. A goal of the conference is to help educators make sense of and meet the needs of a continually changing learning landscape. The conference is a total volunteer effort and is envisioned, planned and implemented by 4 co-conveners and a small group of subcommittees.
Media Midrash: an online platform linking multimedia content to innovative curricula, providing Jewish educators the ability to bring art, animation, film and music directly into their classrooms
MIT Open Coursware: MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) is a web-based publication of virtually all MIT course content. OCW is open and available to the world and is a permanent MIT activity
MyJewishLearning: a trans-denominational website of Jewish information and education geared toward learners of all ages and educational backgrounds. As the central Internet site for learning about Judaism, it is designed to be:Content rich and pedagogically sound--to invite and facilitate site visitors' engagement in ever-deeper levels of learning
On1Foot: an open-source online database of Jewish texts on social justice
Open Knowledge Foundation: Promoting open knowledge in a digital age; and its projects: Open Text Book, Public Domain Works (artistic works), Open Shakespeare, and more.
Open Siddur Project: a free and open source software project founded around a community of folk passionate about the siddur. We are developing an online collaborative publishing platform for crafting custom siddurim, for preserving the diversity of Jewish prayer traditions, and for sharing translations, commentary, t'fillot, meditations, and art in the siddur.
Our Jewish Community: OurJewishCommunity.org will provide some of the same services of a brick-and-mortar congregation, such as access to rabbis, sermons, educational materials, social networking, discussions, and more
SCoPE: brings together individuals who share an interest in educational research and practice
Tagged Tanakh: an online resource that encourages conversations around the Hebrew and English translation of the Bible. By blending curated content and user-generated tags and commentary, the Tagged Tanakh will make ideas and values embedded in this ancient text more accessible to wider audiences
University of the People: University of the People (UoPeople) is the world’s first tuition-free, online academic institution dedicated to the global advancement and democratization of higher education.
U Tech TV on Ustream: Jeff Utecht's channel


Open Knowledge, The Open Knowledge Definition
  • In the simplest form the definition can be summed up in the statement that "A piece of knowledge is open if you are free to use, reuse, and redistribute it". For details read the latest version of the full definition (with explanatory annotations). The history page includes a changelog and links to all previous versions.
Open Source Curriculum, Wikipedia
  • An open source curriculum (OSC) is an online instructional resource that can be freely used, distributed and modified. OSC is based on the open source practice of creating products or software that opens up access to source materials or codes. Applied to education, this process invites feedback and participation from developers, educators, government officials, students and parents and empowers them to exchange ideas, improve best practices and create world-class curricula. These “development” communities can form ad-hoc, within the same subject area or around a common student need, and allow for a variety of editing and workflow structures.
Participatory Culture, Wikipedia
  • Participatory culture is a neologism in reference of, but opposite to a Consumer culture — in other words a culture in which private persons (the public) do not act as consumers only, but also as contributors or producers (prosumers). The term is most often applied to the production or creation of some type of published media. Recent advances in technologies (mostly personal computers and the Internet) have enabled private persons to create and publish such media, usually through the Internet. This new culture as it relates to the internet has been described as Web 2.0.
The increasing access to the Internet has come to play an integral part in the expansion of participatory culture because it increasingly enables people to work collaboratively; generate and disseminate news, ideas, and creative works; and connect with people who share similar goals and interests (see affinity groups). The potential of participatory culture for civic engagement and creative expression has been investigated by media scholar Henry Jenkins. In 2006, Jenkins co-authored a White Paper entitled //Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture: Media Education for the 21st Century//. This paper describes a participatory culture as one:
  • With relatively low barriers to artistic expression and civic engagement
  • With strong support for creating and sharing one’s creations with others
  • With some type of informal mentorship whereby what is known by the most experienced is passed along to novices
  • Where members believe that their contributions matter
  • Where members feel some degree of social connection with one another (at the least they care what other people think about what they have created).
Unconference, Wikipedia
An unconference is a facilitated, participant-driven conference centered around a theme or purpose. The term "unconference" has been applied, or self-applied, to a wide range of gatherings that try to avoid one or more aspects of a conventional conference, such as high fees and sponsored presentations. For example, in 2006, CNNMoney applied the term to diverse events including BarCamp, Bloggercon, and Mashup Camp.[1] The term is primarily used in the geek community. There are parallels with science-fiction fandom, in which a low-key convention with less structure is called a Relaxacon.

Additional Resources:

The Cathedral and the Bazaar: Musings on Linux and Open Source, Eric Raymond
Challenges of An Open Source Age, Rabbi Hayim Herring, Jewish Week, 9/15/09
Creative Commons
Lens on the Future: Open Source Learning, Educause, 2002
Open Source in Education presentation from TechForum 2009 by Grill, Miller, and Stites

FutureTense New Yorkblog

Caren's jlearn20 bookmarks on delicious