I have to admit though that I'm a little apprehensive about using del.icio.us--the whole tagging thing scares me. David Weinberger states my feelings perfectly in the introduction to his book Everything is Miscellaneous (published on Wired.com today):
"That's the big change the rise of the miscellaneous brings. We're adding massive amounts of metadata -- tags, links, playlists, even taxonomies -- to all of the resources available on the web without prior planning and coordination, making a huge mess."
And this is how I feel when I tag the pages I add to del.icio.us--I'm just creating a big mess. Now I'm by no means a novice when it comes to tagging--I love Flickr, Slideshare, and other Web 2.0 sites & tag all of the photos, slideshows, etc. that I put on them. But for some reason I have no problem finding the right words to use to tag a photo; but tagging something like an article called Teen Brain Exposed just throws me for a loop. I'm reading the article because I want to learn more about how the kinds of kids I'm teaching work (actually how they will work--I teach fifth grade). Below is my thinking process (and why I get so confused):
- education seems like an appropriate tag because I want to use the article to improve my teaching. But then it will be lumped in with Web pages that may pertain to assessment or classroom management. The concepts don't seem related at all and if I tag everything I come across that relate to teaching with education then the number of entries under that tag will grow out control.
- teens is too general. I need something more specific, but teenbrain doesn't seem to work either. Besides, I'd like to keep my tags limited to a certain amount (no idea how many) and teenbrain seems like one I'll never use again. So how about brain?
- digitalkids works for me since I like to lump articles about today's kids under this category, but it really isn't article about digital kids.
I can't finish without once again quoting Weinberger. He actually goes on to say that the huge mess is helpful:
"...that mess actually enhances the available ways we can find and make sense of what's available to us. All that unplanned metadata lets us pull pieces together, and then it helps us contextualize and understand those pieces."Perhaps with a little more thought and experience, this will happen for me and I'll be able to choose just the right tags for a particular Website.
Any helpful tips on tagging? Let me know in the comments.
Check out: www.misterteacher.com | Digital Cameras in the Classroom | Education in a Flat World
Technorati Tags: education | internet | David Weinberger