Philosophy of Technology – What device where?

With the nature of Information Communication Technology changing rapidly, the ability to formulate a clear direction is of concern to many schools. Ideally, the solutions would be simple and logical but with the many choices available, making the correct decision requires time, research and educational discussion.

Years 7  to 9  (ages 13 to 15)

Many schools are debating what devices to use in their middle school programs but the question should be what are students wanting to do and what are teachers capable of using to enhance learning?

Creation

It is as simple as allowing students to have a taste of everything and again the necessary broad range of skills in many different areas. I have often witnessed over time that many students find a niche, a particular skill, whether it be photo manipulation or coding to simply creating outstanding videos. The device selected needs to allow students and teachers the ability to create products to express information in varied and creative ways. Complimentary to this needs to be the ability to share these creations with an authentic audience, the world!

I truly believe that many teachers like this philosophy as well. They have the ability to play to their strengths and encourage students to engage in the learning journey by offering them the choice of what product that would like to produce with the information provided. The more this happens the more students and teachers become partners on a continuum of learning and not just a teacher directed one.

This should be what drives the selection of hardware in these formation years.

Years 10 t0 12  (ages 16 to 18)

Unfortunately, teachers are motivated by very different rules when it comes to our senior school environments. We are slaves to the dreaded exam every 15 weeks and it is the consumption, retention and regurgitation of content which is key to success. Of course, it is not all like this but many school would have this as the goal for many of their students.

Consumption

The idea of consumption is exactly as it sounds, here it is you need to know it! If this is the reality, and in theory students have selected courses that suit their abilities, then technology should only be about helping students on their personal learning journey. It should be a tool to aid in the accessing, collecting and organising information provided by both the teacher and in general from the world wide web. While traditional methods of pen and paper work the introduction of technology that accesses the world wide web will allow students, driven to succeed, to drive their learning and interests personally.

Conclusion?

What matters is how teacher ands students are going to use the selected devices. I am wary of driving change in devices through education to fast and this also relates to what you have in place now and if you change what impact will that have on all parties. In a later post I will discuss the issues of Laptops vs iPads in Year 7, 8 and 9 but in general the philosophies  above are really what need to drive, in my opinion, what you need to be aware of regardless of the device.

References:
http://www.ethiopianreview.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/World-Wide-Web-logo.jpg
http://thesituationist.wordpress.com/2009/02/09/the-legal-brain/brain-cogs


One Response to “Philosophy of Technology – What device where?”

  1. Avery James 27 June 2014 12:21 pm
    #

    Excellent Piece of writing