I received the following question in one of my sessions today:
How do you engage the teachers and students who think it is “easier” to just do it (learning) on paper?
My response? Let them do it on paper.
The thing that is powerful about technology is the opportunity to personalize, not standardize. There are some really amazing things that you can do with a computer or mobile device, but the power is often more about the “choice” than the medium. We have the opportunity to reach more students now than ever, not because of “technology”, but because of the options that we are now provided.
Below is one of the tweets from a session at the conference I was just recently at:
— Jenny Garwood (@luckeyfrog) June 18, 2015
I talked to Jenny after, and she was obviously very comfortable using technology, but she chose to personalize a lot of her learning through paper and pen. That is what worked for her and that is what is important. What is also necessary is that in her classroom, she creates the same opportunities for choice as well.
People like Sylvia Duckworth amaze me with their ability to draw and connect their learning in a way that is so appealing to many. Her collection of SketchNotes that she creates and shares openly are absolutely amazing and not only appeal to her, but to so many others. She actually helped my learning by sharing a Sketchnote she created on the “8 Characteristics of the Innovator’s Mindset”.
The idea that all learners need to use “tech” is not necessarily a step in the right direction. The opportunity to create learning experiences for yourself that are personally driven, as opposed to created for you by someone else, is one of the benefits that we need to really recognize in schools today.
I promise you that I will not take away your pen and paper to learn, if you let me use my computer to do the same. Deal?