Tuesday, July 26, 2005

How deep can you cut a record groove?

One of the things that was evident going through my Masters degree what that for every story out there that said that technology is great, there was another that said it was not. Nothing new there, but neither side really had much in the way of evidence to support it's argument other than anecdotes (which seems to be the case with much of the research into learning - essentially they are ethnographies of a time and place in the academic society). This is slowly changing however, but in the mean time stories are still coming out. I found these two this morning - the first Study faults schools on computer use by Chris Kenning of the Courier-Journal. A district study found that teachers were not integrating technology into their classroom lessons on a regular basis. This is likely as much the story here in Alberta as it is Kentucky (where incidentally there is another Edmonton). The bottom line is that teacher don't have the time and the support to integrate. Another story, Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8-18 Year-olds by the Kaiser Family Foundation says that most students spend up to 40h per week using new media. This is the part that we have heard again and again, cutting the groove deeper - teachers are not integrating, kids are media savy. But how about this idea - are we just trying to force integration - why flow against the current. We have the idea that technology and media is outside the classroom already, why not let it seep in slowly as information as opposed to hardware and software? Maybe the classroom is a place by the nature of it's design that the only proper activity there is discussion, the exchange of information garnered though technology. If we can get the teachers trained up to the same point as the students are, then there is an equilibrium in terms of how information is accessed, once this is established, maybe better things can start happening. Technorati Tags: , , ,