nichole pinkard

nichole pinkard bw


As founder of the Digital Youth Network, a digital literacy program for Chicago youth that incorporates both in-school and out-of-school settings and co-founder of YOUmedia, a 5,500-square-foot multimedia learning space for Chicago teens, Nichole Pinkard is well known in the digital media & learning community for work that encompasses both theory and practice. Pinkard is also the co-creator of Remix World, a social learning platform that connects youth’s learning opportunities in school, home, and in the community. She’s also serving as conference chair for the 2014 Digital Media and Learning Conference, which is themed “Connecting Practices” and will take place March 6-8, 2014, in Boston. 

via Nichole when asked…

DML2014’s theme, “Connecting Practices,” marks a transitional focus from theory to educational practice. Is this a sign of changing times in the field?:

We are now at that point where we can think about DML and connected learning becoming a movement. We now have on-the-ground applications so people can touch it and feel it, which means that we have to really move towards helping more people understand how to turn theory into practice. DML has always been about that intersection of people who are both interventionists and researchers. 

How do these shifting connotations of mentorship you speak of factor into the conference theme?

Those of us who work in digital media – and DYN have been guilty of this –are in a space where we can show great examples of what kids have produced, but we don’t display the pathways beyond the one-year or three-month program a kid is engaged in. We have to start to understand the pathways and the longitudinal outcomes and impact of our work. How do we follow kids over a period of time, and how do we hand off kids to each other such that I shouldn’t have to feel I have to run a video program that expands six grade levels? Can’t I focus on what I know best and figure out what the natural handoffs are for other organizations either online or in the physical space to support the kids? We work with kids, and we think they are our kids until they graduate, but for the betterment of the kids, we have to think about the pathways.


Nichole was part of the connected learning series that Nic Askew produced:


monday, october 15, 2012

nichole pinkard – creative via nic askew

who’s capable of learning – paradigm shiftwe don’t have the standardized society…
we need everyone to be creative…
so we need to rethink public ed..
to develop that curiosity…

creativity sitting at the heart of ed for all..

a new form of illiterate
respecting multiple modes of communication

school is not about the right answer
it’s about how you connect


extended interview of Nichole from new learners of the 21st cent: