Saturday, November 6, 2010
I was assigned Jerrid Kruse, who is an 8th grade science teacher in Nebraska. His blog presents some very interesting thoughts on technology in the classroom. The first blog post I commented on was titled “Technology lets you choose”. Mr. Kruse said that yes, technology lets you choose, but choose what? I commented that technology lets you choose, but you must be careful how you use it, and there is an increasing need to use technology responsibly – for educators and students.
Mr. Kruse’s response to me:
I would add something to your role of educators. In order for students to really use technology 'responsibly', they must be able to critique the technology. That is, student must be able to identify what things the technology is doing for them, how the technology might change their thinking, how the technology might change our culture, and how some of these changes are not desirable. All technologies have a faustian bargain, or a trade-off.
That said, these negative effects are not an excuse for teachers to not use technology. Tech literacy must include understanding how to use modern technology, but people rarely note how tech literacy must include understanding some of these deeper philosophical issues surrounding technology.
The second article that I commented on was “What is the purpose of educational technology?” Mr. Kruse presents some enlightening comments in this post as well. The part of his post that I could really relate to was when he was discussing stimulating students with technology without engaging them in the class. In this class – and others – we always talk about how students are so stimulated outside of the classroom that we have to incorporate technology into our classroom to compete with everything they are used to outside of the classroom. However, it is possible to stimulate the students without having them learn anything. I had not thought about this before, but it definitely has me thinking.