Free the Curriculum!

One of the more fascinating websites and blogs I’ve come across recently is Lawrence Lessig’s; Lessig is a Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and founder of the school’s Center for Internet and Society. Professor Lessig is the author of Free Culture (2004), The Future of Ideas (2001) and Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace (1999). He chairs the Creative Commons project, and serves on the boards of several foundations related to electronic frontiers and public knowledge. Here’s a link to his entire impressive bio.

Right now Jimbo Wales is guest-blogging for Professor Lessig. Jimbo’s the brains behind the Wikipedia and other projects. I haven’t yet found a blog for Jimbo, but if he starts one I’ll quickly add it to my growing collection.

Anyway, Jimmy Wales is using his space on Prof. Lessig’s blog to put forth an interesting concept: Ten Things That Will Be Free. I’ll let him explain: “I started to name the list ‘Ten Things That Must Be Free’ – but this sounded to me too much like an empty political demand. And the point is: this is not a dream list of things which I hope through some magic to become free, but a list of things which I believe are solvable in reality, things that will be free.

“I will be presenting the ten things over the next ten days, but I will let you in on a little secret. I haven’t finished the list. In true collaborative style, I want to invite you to participate in the finalization and formation of the list.”

So… The first free thing on Jimbo’s list was – predictably enough – a Free Encyclopedia.

Item #2? Free the Curriculum! “The second thing that will be free is a complete curriculum (in all languages) from Kindergarten through the University level. There are several projects underway to make this a reality, including our own Wikibooks project, but of course this is a much bigger job than the encyclopedia, and it will take much longer.”

Free the curriculum. Hmmm. Thought we did that about 25 years ago. Still…

Be sure to read the comments, too. It’s interesting watching these folks discuss the whole concept of knowledge as something that should be freely available.

Hat tip to Katje Sabin, former HEM columns editor!

3 Responses to Free the Curriculum!

  1. Mary Nix on August 5, 2005 at 4:59 am

    It is fascinating to watch these folks discuss the concept of knowledge as something that should be available freely.

    Thanks Helen (and Katje), I’ve bookmarked it and will be looking forward to reading the rest of the things he feels should be free.

    Mary

  2. Valerie on August 5, 2005 at 7:27 am

    Wikipedia has been one of my favorite references for some time now. I look forward to reading Prof. Lessig’s books, now that I know about them.

    Creative Commons is an organization/concept/movement? that I came across just yesterday on a blog. I liked the look of it, but was waiting for further references before jumping in with both feet. Thanks for the connection.

  3. [...] Free the Curriculum – Helen Hegener [...]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Do you have a question?
We have several answers!

Search HEM's 10,000+ page knowledge base.

Home Education Magazine

Home Education Magazine is available by subscription in either print, digital, or a combined format.

(Preview a digital sample.)

Subscribe Today

Print - One Year Sub $26.00
Print - Two Year Sub $48.00
Digital - One Year Sub $13.00
Digital & Print - One Year Sub $36.00
Print US domestic only. HEM is no longer accepting print subs to foreign addresses.

Since 1983 Home Education Magazine has been a trusted name in homeschooling.



RSS Home Education Magazine

  • I Am Open to Conflict, by Nadine LeBean
      Whenever I need to learn something really well, I teach it. That is what has brought me to you today. I need to remember and fully believe what has worked and what has not worked with helping my children to resolve conflict. Even among unschoolers it is not uncommon to hear that people are […]

RSS Homeschooling

RSS News & Commentary

  • Wisconsin Virtual Academy Must Adhere to Public School Requirements
    Wisconsin Virtual Academy Must Adhere to Public School Requirements Over the years, there has been intentional word mixing by some officials in order to draw independent homeschoolers back into the public schools.  Across the board, confusion often reigns as to who or who is not a homeschooler.  It usually lies on the homeschool community’s back to educate o

RSS HEM Resources

  • Hands On Science Kits
    Hands On Science Kits Tumblehome Learning, helps kids imagine themselves as young scientists or engineers and encourages them to experience science through adventure and self-guided discovery. Exciting mystery Adventure Fun experiments Hands On Science Kits All carefully designed to engage students. Learn more about how to engage and satisfy your kids scient

RSS HEM Groups

  • Staying Informed
    Staying Informed The issues facing homeschoolers today are fundamentally the same as 30 years ago when HEM was first published. While communication is easier the underlying social question is, can parents be trusted with their kids? Our political positions will support this answer in the affirmative. But this is not always the case nor is it always easy to u