Making Curriculum Pop

Welcome & About


Welcome! This is Ryan Goble coming at you with teaching resources and fun; and if you're not careful we’ll share some cool web links before we’re done!

Making Curriculum Pop was created in the spirit of groundbreaking shows like Fat Albert, Sesame Street and School House Rock. Each of these programs embraced common cultures to engage kids in learning. That type of education – the fun, cool, meaningful and engaging kind - is what Making Curriculum Pop is here to facilitate through Ning’s Web 2.0 technology.

In the summer of 2009 my wife and I moved back home to Chicago where I teach teachers as an adjunct professor at Aurora, Roosevelt and Benedictine Universities. From 2005-2009 I worked as a curriculum coordinator and new teacher coach at a high school in the South Bronx, NYC. During that time I spent a lot of time sharing teaching resources that utilize common cultures. Building on the work I was doing in my day job I thought it would be powerful and political to bring together a collective of teachers dedicated to making curriculum pop. The site officially launched on January 20 ,2009.

It is hard for individual teachers to catch every cool website, video clip, song, study guide or comic but collectively MC POP is a forum where we can all share resources to reinvent our core curriculum and the larger dialogue on public education. So if you use popular and common cultures to reflect, refract, refocus and reinvent your core curriculum MC POP is the place for you.

The site is a spin off of the work that Paul, Nicole and I do at Mindblue but it is not designed to be an advertising hub. I’m sure we’ll broadcast a message when we release a new study guide but that is not the focus of the web site. NONE of the links I e-mail are paid solicitations. The ads on the right sidebar are placed by Ning and will be there until I decide we can pay for the network (that lets you know how - cough - impressive the present Mindblue revenue stream is). I dig teachers and companies that do cool work and want to share those resources with teachers however, this network is designed for educators who work with students.

As the network evolves over time, I’ll articulate guidelines for folks with commercial interests and individuals around spam. In the meantime I hope you’ll get started by doing something cool on the network.

Good Vibes,

Ryan R. Goble

Dear MC Popper,

The credo here is that of the circus barker - "come one, come all!"

Just like the Field of Dreams we built it and you have come. The MC POP community has gathered and we have created a space loaded with interesting and passionate folks. MC POPPERS include
teachers of every subject at every grade level, graphic novelists, educational writers, filmmakers, non-profit educators, educational entrepreneurs and college instructors. Our community is a dynamic one and it is an honor for me to be the ring leader of this little educational circus.

The MC POP Ning was launched on January 20, 2009 - the same day Obama was inaugurated. That seemed like a good day to start something...groovy. The basic goal of the site is to create a space
where people can share and develop the kind of resources that make students of all ages engage in learning through pop culture and best practices.

The mission and story behind the Ning can be found on the main page, just under the mosaic of MC Poppers (bottom of this image).



If you want to read more about the MC POP concept, please click here to go to the main page.

That said, this is the welcome page, so welcome, welcome,welcome to MC POP! By reading this you've already accepted the invitation to start participating in our exciting educational adventure!

Most new MC POPPERS want to get a flavor of the community before they dive into the deep end so let me get your feet wet...

I try to write long, hopefully thoughtful or thought provoking,"bouncing blogs" when I can focused on ways we can make our teaching pop. In addition to these blogs I find a gazillion "pop"
resources all the time that I constantly add to interest groups as
little mini-discussions. 

The community posts those little resources in groups as they are designed for all of us to target our resources, comments or questions at a group of people with related interests or expertise. The groups continue to grow rapidly. In larger groups one can get a crazy volume of responses when you start a discussion. John C. Weaver asked a question in the Graphic Novels & Comics Group - "Asking for Graphic Novel Suggestions" that launched quite a large discussion.

Once you join a group you can ask questions, share resources, or broadcast events to people interested in your thoughts and ideas. Point? - Most of the day-to-day action on the site happens in
groups and membership in them allows you to get the most out of your time here at MC POP.

I addition to my blog and resource contributions, I highlight interesting contributions and questions during Blog & Cog Mondays, Crowdsource Tuesdays and Week in Review (WIR) Thursdays. Sometimes, I share Twitter highlights on Twitter flow Saturdays.

To get started you might take a look at some of the MC POP playlist entries like:





or a resource post like COMIC SCIENCE

This is more than enough to get you on your way to making MC POP, POP! Assuming you like what you read, I recommend you do 3 things...

1. Add an photo, icon or avatar to your profile that tells the MC POP community about YOU!

2. Join (or create) a lot of groups as those are where you'll find the richest resources and discussions and a day to day basis.

3. And yeah, if you like what you see, please by all means, tell your friends! You can use the invite feature to spread the world far and wide because this place gets more and more interesting as we add rockin' people to the mix.

This welcome page and How 2 tab will grow in time. In fact, I've put placeholder pages in including things like "finding cool stuff" & "starting cool discussions."

In the meantime I'd like to welcome you again Shakespeare & Guns N' Roses Style:

“Small cheer and great welcome makes a merry feast.”

and, edited for good taste...

"Welcome to the jungle
We got fun 'n' games
We got everything you want
Honey we know the names
We are the people that can find
Whatever you may need"

Now, get out there and don't be shy!

Good Vibes and thanks for joining MC POP.

Double R to the G
(That's the hip-hopped version of my full name, Ryan Randall Goble - my British spy version is Agent Double RG)

PS - If you want to know more about what a Ning is - I would describe it as a combination of Facebook and Blogs with a twist of wiki. For a fuller explanation, check this two-pager from Educause.



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