Sunday, January 30, 2011

Blog Post #3

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 19:  University of ...Image by Getty Images via @daylife1. Discrepancies between what we think and what we know happen every day. College is no different. The harsh reality exists and the video A Vision of Students Today shows that reality quite poignantly. Books that we never use cost us a fortune and we can only sell them back for about half-price. Meal plans we barely use are required. Price hikes in tuition, but no increase in the scholarships. Here's an article I found about the tuition bubble.   Something doesn't seem right about those things. Maybe it's just me. Yeah, sure, I'm lazy at times. Sometimes, I don't pay attention in class. I spend most of my time either writing, reading, or on the internet. But I get stuff done and do I get any credit for that? No.

But the real problem I believe lies in the way things are arranged. Education has slacked to the point where we, the students, are waiting for it catch up. The lack of technology and innovation is holding us hostage in the past. We still have chalkboards in every room. Some rooms have a smart board, but the only times I've seen it used as anything other than a projector for a PowerPoint was in Dr. Strange's class. We want to move to the brighter future, but we can't if we aren't given the chance. That video is almost an anthem of our generation. It's a testament to how things will continue if we don't change. Personally, I don't know how to make the video more of an impact than it already is. I felt an instant connection to the message with just the simple texts and subtle music. Maybe if they had some people saying their messages? I don't know. I like it the way it is. Sometimes simpler is better. You don't get swept up in the special effects and completely miss the point.

2. In her blog post, It's Not about the Technology, Kelly Hines makes a valid point. Without solid teaching skills and a desire to learn as well as teach kids to learn, technology would be a useless tool. It's like giving a toad a computer. Well, maybe not a toad, but you get my point. And Mrs. Hines' as well. Technology isn't the solution to every problem. It can't "fix" anything without first breaking a few old habits. And you know what they say about those: they die hard.

Yeah, it's going to be difficult, but I think if the learning community can step up and work as a unit, we can devise some methods of implementing a new way of teaching. A way of teaching that will be viable in the years to come, and not outdated as the current way has proven to be. Here's the link that Mrs. Hines also included in her post to 21st Century site. It's very interesting, I've already briefly checked it out.

3.  "If a teacher today is not technologically literate - and is unwilling to make the effort to learn more - it's equivalent to a teacher 30 years ago who didn't know how to read and write." Karl Fisch
That quote, while he disclaims it to be slightly "extreme", is something that should be considered heavily. What does the future hold for teachers who aren't technologically literate? Will they even be able to teach? Fisch discusses these questions very succinctly in his blog post Is It Okay To Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher? I found his approach to be quite insightful and his comment that I listed at the beginning of my response is central to his stance. With the way society is advancing toward a hands-free and plugged-in future, it is nearly impossible for a teacher to remain on the outside of advancement. Doing so will result in a major imbalance in the classroom, with students knowing more about how the world really works than the teacher. Is that something that is desirable? I think not.

Teachers are supposed to be on the cutting edge of education, and to be willing to update their own methods to incorporate new ideas and ways of teaching. If not, such a teacher that refuses to run with the rest of the pack will die out and find that they no longer become applicable or needed at their post. We are past the age where the only tools a teacher needs are his chalk, books, and knowledge. These days require a substantial widening of experience and tools that, quite frankly, I feel will make the learning experience not only more enjoyable for the students who are accustomed to the new technology, but also for the teacher, who will find that using the things available to them opens many more doors of actually reaching the students.

4. Wow. That's all I could say while I watched the numbers increase without bound. How can there even be that many people doing all of that? How can the internet be so vast? I just can't wrap my brain around it. The massiveness of technology is overwhelming. I could almost picture a small percent--maybe only 0.0000001%--of those downloads, uploads, calls, texts, messages, emails, posts, videos, and comments being my future students or the siblings of my future students or the parents. How can what I have to teach them compete with all of that? It can't. I don't see how.

I think though, that if I could somehow incorporate all of those things, or at least a small percentage, I could make my lessons more applicable in a way. But again, how? At this point, I haven't a clue, but I'm going to figure out a way. I have to. I don't want to become one of those teachers that Fisch mentioned and in that way become outdated. That won't be my fate.

5. The video, Technology in the Classroom, that Brooke Broadus posted was interesting and brought up some good points about why technology is important and should be considered when teaching. It's not good to be afraid to use technology, because that just leads to a deficiency in the classroom. Students are already using it at home and with friends, and when they come to school, it is somewhat disconcerting for them to be thrust into an environment that does not implement technology to its fullest.     

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1 comment:

  1. Bailey,

    I completely agree with you that teachers need to be up to date with technology, and all teachers need to be technologically literate. I love the quote you included by Karl Fisch because I whole heartedly agree with him. To better our students, we must provide an adequate education, and this includes the use of technology. I loved your blog, and keep up the amazing writing.