Thursday, April 2, 2015

Technology: Good or Bad

     In our time, whenever anything changes we all look at the down falls. It was done with many changes through the years, through the decades. Outside of the educational world it happened to The Beatles and it happened to Elvis. It happened to TV when it took over for radio.There were flocks of people that did not want to hear change.The way we are doing things is the best way and all change is bad. Teachers already have so much to do, learning clever ways to use technology is overwhelming. Technology is bad.

     Technology is the reason we can share and use each others ideas so easily. It is the technological era and we can type this stuff up and share it in the matter of a seconds. We are able to type a few words into a search and find out what other teachers are doing. We can write blogs, follow blogs, follow people on Facebook and enjoy pinning on Pinterest. We Twitter and Instagram. When it comes to sharing information among adults, teachers embrace technology. Technology is good.

        We still have teachers that do not see that everyone can benefit from technology in education. To a point, I can understand. Looking for ways to use technology to these teachers is like swimming in the ocean without a life jacket. There is so much, yet so little. Their administrators want them to use technology and they feel the pressure to use it, yet so much is thrown at them at one time, it feels like there is nothing they can use. They feel uncomfortable with technology and using it always seems foreign. Even if technology seems clever to teachers that are reluctant to use it, they feel like it is a waste of the students time. They feel there are more relevant things a student should be doing with their day. There just is no time to learn about all of the new things that are out their for teachers and students to do. There is no time to introduce these things to students. There are just too many things teachers and students already have to do.Technology is bad.

     There are so many things to learn and share with our students. Students can learn to read, do math, and use writing to explain their thinking in a variety of disciplines. They can even learn to code. Students can research and share their findings with photography, videos, blogs and a multitude of websites that offer many different ways for them to share their thinking and show their creativity. They can use games to build their learning and acknowledge and recognize their own growth by advancing levels. Technology is good.

     We see some people living the change by way of obsession. They seem to never go outside or do anything that does not involve technology. Although we can never know what other people are doing 24 hours a day, we decide that they do for 24 hours what we witness for 15 or 20 minutes. Thus, technology is bad. Someone is interested in hiking, technology is bad.Some are interested in cooking, technology is bad. Some are interested in reading, or biking, or walking and technology is bad. This discourages our technological growth in the educational profession.Technology is bad.

     Teachers can read the thoughts and ideas of other teachers who have explored other websites and apps and use their experiences to choose websites and apps that meet their needs. Teachers can adjust the learning experiences on these websites and apps to be certain student practice what they need. Not only can they provide practice and opportunities of exploration, they can also apply strategies for intervention.. Gathering data and progress monitoring the students that need intervention and providing easy to read charts, graphs and grade books. Having a wealth of reference materials and information to provide to administration and parents at the stroke of a fingertip. Technology is good.

     Growing pains are painful. Admitting change happens and will always happen is hard. Learn about the change anyway. Maybe, just maybe, we can find something admirable about the change. You can not find the good if you do not know what is happening. Do not limit yourself to the opinions of others. Find out for yourself if there is anything that can benefit you and your students in technology. Find out for yourself how you feel about the changes. Sometimes it seems easier to adopt the ideas and feelings of others. Chances are you are learning many new things anyway, technology is just one of them. In the end, it will save you time.Technology is here to stay. Not anywhere in history, has any society ever developed something new and then decided to abandon that growth and go backward.

     Do not be discouraged by the change, embrace the change. Grow with the change. Become one with the change.

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