Saturday, February 11, 2017

Use technology in schools

When education changes it changes slowly. Often it is caught in a conflict between advancement, staying current and traditional education. Traditional education is where the problem lies. Students are advancing at such a furious pace that staying traditional can never keep pace with the advancements the students are exposed to, especially with technology and its uses. Teachers still teach the skills students need using books. Using blogging, podcasting, online video and social networking allows students to explore the same themes and ideas in ways that will help the students to understand by visually seeing and applying what is being taught. It allows for the use of creativity to demonstrate learning. This is far more powerful than any standardized test could be.

How ever teachers are caught in a trap. They are required to provide a structured learning environment, using the same teaching techniques that have been successfully passed down through the years. While there are a few enlightened administrators who see the benefits of the new way of reaching students many still enforce the "this is the way it is done" idea. Teachers need to make strong arguments for using technology and demonstrate not only its appeal, but its strength in reaching kids. The other problem with this lies in the idea that standardized tests are the new norm and they definitely do not allow for technology to to help demonstrate the understanding a child possesses. A child's knowledge is not defined by a test. It is defined by their ability to produce evidence creatively of what they have learned in life.

It is time to strengthen students by creatively using technology to develop strong, intellectually aware individuals. Have them explore the world and creatively use the technology to present what they see. Then we will have a society that can be just and learning.