Saturday, January 28, 2012

A Sad, Absurd Contrast

Last night Educon opened with a panel discussion on innovation.  I spent an hour and a half watching and learning from that discussion in Philadelphia with a teacher in Australia through the power of 21st century technology.

Earlier in the day my students used the same technology to spend an hour and a half in front of a computer taking a district mandated multiple choice benchmark exam.

If absurd misuses of 21st century technology such as this continue to be commonplace, should we really be perplexed when our students graduate unprepared for the world in which we will send them?

Educon 2.4 Panel - Photo Credit: Flickr/kjarrett


  1. Very nice blog! I'd like to exchange links with you. I have already added to my blogroll.

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  2. In 2005, Todd Oppenheimer suggested I read The Flickering Mind. I bought it but didn't open the book until today. As an educational tech evangelist with years of integrating technology into my blended and fully online K-18 and adult professional development classes, I am starting to wonder...

  3. I'm most worried that, without computers and project-based learning in schools, students will graduate believing computers are toys rather than tools.

    Students will learn to manipulate Facebook and Google at home. But they won't have learned the discipline of focused research. They won't differentiate between reputable and non-reputable sites. They won't consider how computer graphics can enhance a message. They won't know how to finish large tasks.

    Janet |

    1. I also share these same concerns. The schools are so worried about possible risks that they ignore the potential and limit or shut down many tools. So it is also a worry that they are learning the tech tools at home with no-one helping them understand how to negotiate the required personal information from the requested and what they should share, who they should include on their personal spaces(etc.) thus learning how to make things safer for them.

  4. I hope you'll blog about the panel discussion. I would be interested in your perspective. I always enjoy your thoughts.

  5. Nellie,
    Thanks for the tip on the book. I'm going to check that out. Thanks for your comment.

    I couldn't agree more. I have the same concerns. Thanks for commenting.

    Toward the end of the discussion there were great points made about how risk-adverse our society has become and how that's impacted student learning. I'm putting my thoughts together on how that relates to our upcoming science fair. I'll put that post up in the next day or so. Thanks!