1. I stressed this same point in an in-service PD session this morning. I am a technology integrator and I love using all sorts of technology, but I also feel that using a software application or 2.0 tool in the classroom simply for the sake of being able to say, "We are integrating technology" is senseless.

    Makes me curious. I wonder if it is difficult for teacher coaches and administrators to confidently evaluate a lesson that "integrates technology". You are clearly comfortable with technology, but for an administrator who isn't, I wonder if the tendency is to assume that if a teacher is using technology they must therefore be teaching something valuable. Hmm…

    Thanks for the post.

  2. Great post George. My colleague @darcymullin posted a similar blog a couple of weeks ago. http://darcymullin.wordpress.com/2011/02/08/inspi… We've been talking about technology and the fact that if the technology simply makes your stand-and-deliver look cool, it's not innovative or integrated. Technology is the "new' medium, but I believe there are some core fundamentals to effective teaching and learning that are timeless. We will always need good formative assessments, effective ways to differentiate, and accurate/authentic ways to know our students have grown. Using the tools wisely will maximize engagement; use them poorly and they become another distraction. Thanks George.

  3. Great post George,

    I think we can almost look at it as "How many more kids am I going to reach by doing things this way rather than that way?" Our goal is to inspire, excite, engage, challenge and connect with the most students possible and HOW we do that should be decided using this as criteria. We still have a responsibility to give our students tools that they will use in their futures, but as far as obsessing about technology, I agree it is not necessary.

    So much can be improved in a classroom and/or a building by developing great lessons, regardless of the technology they utilize.

    Thanks for helping us keep that in mind.

  4. Sue Sneath

    I like the concept of, "once the tech becomes normal, then ubiquitious…then invisible" that's so true, but I hadn't thought of it. The computer itself (word processing and internet) is well on its way past ubiquitous…not quite yet invisible.

    I always try to focus on the learning and am determined to set up the conditions whereby all children can grow…really good post George – Thank you.

  5. George,

    This has been my struggling point with technology for years. I felt like I was inventing ways to use technology and had difficulty making it match with curriculum. I never felt right wasting kids' time by having them use tools to say we were using technology.

    In the last year as I've been spending more time on Twitter, have been participating in more online conversations, and learned more about the use of tools & applications (and seen examples from classrooms), I've learned so much more about all that is available. I've had time to try it out and use it.

    Consequently, what has happened is I no longer think about how I want to use technology. I find myself finally being able to think we're learning this, we're trying to do that — this tool or application would work perfectly. The computer is becoming a "pencil" in my classroom. Students just get up and post to their blog, students just get up and take digital pictures of learning, students just get up and create learning conversations. There's so much more I have to learn to be able to support my students in creating meaning with technology.

    It's "not about the tool, it's about the learning". I see this as a journey. We have to understand that educators are in various stages of this process. How do we help colleagues (and ourselves) to continue on the path to making technology just like a pencil?


    • George

      Thanks for your comment Cathy 🙂 I think we have to just keep showing examples of learning to colleagues to share how this is not about technology. For example, I received a great resource for Physical Education teachers yesterday that is an online, collaborative blog. Computers are the last place to look for a lot of PE teachers, but showing them that they can connect with other teachers that are like minded and have some great resources, may help break down some of the barriers that many see.

      The examples are there, we just have to show them 🙂

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