Next week, April 8th-12th, William G. Thomas and Patrick Jones will be hosting virtual sessions on History Harvest for anyone interested in learning more. I had the good fortune of participating in the first History Harvest in Lincoln, Nebraska, in 2010, and have watched the program grow over the last couple of years. And for all of the talk surrounding MOOCs, it’s refreshing to see alternative approaches to utilizing technology that better serves students (indeed, the Chronicle has called this a “new kind of MOOC”).
The plan for next week’s Blitz Week is to open participation into the strategic planning of History Harvest and offering an overview of the project generally. If you’re looking to learn more about History Harvest generally, I’d check out the official site or this piece in Perspectives. Professor Thomas details the plans behind Blitz Week here and here.
I love the idea behind History Harvest and the accompanying research, pedagogical, and public history aspects embedded in the program. The community-driven aspect really resonates with me, and the technology available to us – digital cameras, audio recorders, digital archival platforms like Omeka – means we have tools available to conduct and deploy such projects. Pedagogically, History Harvest provides an opportunity to have undergraduates and graduate students involved in every aspect of the project. The work happens outside the classroom and gets students and the community working hands-on with the collection, preservation, and interpretation of history – plus, there’s an added advantage of equipping students with digital skills. I really enjoyed my experience with the project, and would readily welcome an opportunity to participate in future History Harvests.
- History Harvest official site, including information and projects, plus the blog.
- “History Harvests: What Happens When Students Collect and Digitize the People’s History?,” Perspectives, January 2013.
- “Spring at the ‘History Harvest’, The Junto, March 6, 2013.
- William G. Thomas, “History Harvest Blitz Week, April 8-12, 2013,” February 9, 2013.
- William G. Thomas, “Invitation to join History Harvest online blitz week, April 8-12, 2013,” March 21, 2013.