What woke you up this morning? Chances are it was technology. How did you find your way around the bathroom in the dark? Chances are you used a little technology to shed some light on the problem. All day, everyday without making a concerted effort to integrate technology into our lives we succeed. Why is it such an effort in schools? If you think for a moment most of our students use more technology at home than they do at school. From the minute they hop on the old yellow bus which whisks parents back to their own childhood, to the stacks of copies and worksheets, it’s difficult to see any dramatic changes in the last 20 years. When are those buses going to get seat belts anyway? The point is that even with our laptops and computer carts and a smattering of Promethean boards a child’s day is anything but digital. Despite the apparent lack of digital interface between students and classwork they manage quite well. What does this say about the real need for technology in education?
Is the education world like a bubble of protection surrounding students and buffering them from the outside world? Much consideration goes into the schools responsibility for protecting students on every level. The advent of technology in the classroom simply raised the threat level to orange. Sometimes fear of the unknown squash solutions and new to old problems. Next time you hear you cell phone ring or the Outlook reminder tone, consider the children. Is it enough that schools offer them a place to learn and grow in a controlled environment or is something missing that would make school less retro and more reflective of society?
What does society look like? Have you integrated technology today. Have your children? Did you train for weeks to become proficient on the cell phone or expert emailers? Can you imagine life without your laptop? It’s a fast paced world you live in and your ability to adapt and change is critical to your welfare. If these skills are not being taught in schools then the responsibility falls squarely on the parents. Check out the competition. The One Laptop per Child. Nicholas Negroponte of MIT is the project chairman. The goal is to reach children in the third world. It raises the bar for the rest of us!
Check out this recent post from www.downloadsquad.com