What an interesting debate topic this last week’s class covered. Whether or not teaching things inside the classroom that can be “Googled” should be allowed or not. The main thing as an educator to me is how does this affect my student’s learning? I think that there are positives to both sides of the argument. However, I do believe that whatever the learning outcome is, we should be using the tool that helps our students understand that particular outcome. Whether that makes the work easier or harder it does not matter to me. The only question is what side does make it better for the student. And is there a correct answer? Or is it a mix of both sides?

I want to start by talking about the benefits of technology in the classroom. I listened to Sugata’s Mitra’s Ted Talk. I found it very interesting when he talked about the school system and the schools themselves. We are clearly working and teaching in schools that are outdated and not very much has changed over the years. We are continually teaching the same stuff, as the outside world completely changes rapidly, especially regarding technology. Technology is so important to us in everyday life. Especially the fact that so many jobs once students graduate from the school system will be based off the technology that we do not provide in the school system. I definitely agree with what Surgata is trying to say. That we need to be advancing our practice inside the school and meeting the rapidly changing world of technology.

Both debaters made some excellent points about memorization and how that would play a factor. I thought both sides had excellent points, and I am on the side that memorization should not matter as much as being able to understand the content. As well as being able to demonstrate the content in some form of matter would be key. I think that the debate was a draw for me. There are positives and negatives to both sides, great debate you two! A+ Effort!


Great Debate 1!

Hello everyone! I hope everyone had an exciting week and it excited for the upcoming week which I’m sure will be full of much more exhilarating debate topics. So the question that was posed to us was “does technology enhance learning?” This was such an easy question when I first thought about it. Of course it does! How could it not!? Webster was the first video we watched and I read the article he provided ” Benefits of Technology in the classroom”. I was even more swayed and did not think I would budge at all. Especially when it talked about how it connects students through a variety of ways. I thought that was interesting, especially in a world where technology is becoming more and more dominant. There is no way that it could not help learners.

It was then Melanie who came in and presented her findings, her article was very interesting and how lack of support could make technology not the right choice. The one point she made that completely made me change my thinking was when she noted the statistic about how technology does not help students that use to hit their desired outcome better than students that do not. This made me take a giant step back and think about the question more in depth. Sure technology may make a lesson more interesting but does it actually enhance the learning. I would have to say at this point no. When looking at the question I was not reading the question correctly or thinking about it in the right context. I am coming out and admitting that I was one of those people that flipped and changed my vote. Sorry Webster!! Anyways I thought the debate was awesome and very well done. Thank you both debaters for placing the bar so high. I only hope I can follow! Cheers everybody.

Digital Identity

Digital identity is such an important issue that needs to be looked at intensely when looking at our youth. More so than at any point in human existence are we more closely monitored by our peers due to social media and our online presence. No longer are we at a point where our actions in the public are the only things that give our character merit. We now have a personality on the internet and how we use it is usually how we are judged/respected by our peers. A staggering 59% of kids under 10 have a social media networking account, that number blows my mind. With usually 6 and a half hours of screen time. You cannot tell me that these young children have been taught the skills necessary to act and conduct themselves as proper digital citizens.

I think that the school has a huge role in developing their students at digital citizens. I believe as an educator that a child needs a strong role model within their home life. As well as somebody outside of their “family” circle. That is where we as educators come in. In a lot of cases children do not even have that role model at home, or have anyone at home for that matter that can teach them this essential knowledge. But we as teachers can guarantee that they will have somebody once they step outside of their home life and into a school setting. Often times students do not have the technology that other students are provided due to their socio economic status. Schools provide that technological platform where everyone can be working on the same thing with the same technology. We have a duty to our students to teach them how to be responsible digital citizens. The schools job is to teach knowledge to students about life to make sure that they graduate and are ready for the working world. We teach them proper decision making skills, etiquette, and how to live a healthy life. So why shouldn’t we be teaching them about something that they are going to deal with their entire lives. Technology is clearly taking over and is here to stay. So the skills needed to better ourselves with that component in our everyday lives needs to be taught. Like everything in this world we have to understand that children are going to make mistakes. They are often times impulsive, and are doing their best to fit in socially with their peers and find their place in this world. So we have to be forgiving in terms of mistakes being made on social media. And we have to move quickly to teaching them these skills so that it does not effect their future career goals once they enter the work field.