I was asked by someone today how to bridge a curriculum department with technology department, and my first response was, “ask them questions to understand where they are coming from.” Obviously this is the Covey “seek to understand” idea and I think many people spend too much time defending what they believe, as opposed to trying to understand the starting point of others.
One of the questions I suggested should be asked was (since it was a one-to-one school), “What difference does technology have on learning in the classroom?” Her belief was that the response would be that it hasn’t changed anything. My follow up question would then be, “So why did you buy the technology?”
I was quickly reminded of this Neil Postman quote:
“When Gutenberg invented the printing press, we didn’t have Europe plus books. Instead we had a whole new Europe.”
If we are adding devices to our classroom environment, the opportunities should profoundly change. If I can do the exact same thing with pen and paper, it would be fiscally irresponsible. You might not be at the point in your school that you see the transformation that technology can have on learning, but you should at least be on the path. It can’t simply be, “school plus technology”. It should be a whole new experience.
What do you think?