Another topic that is sure to engage educators is technology integration in the classroom, but I have some trouble with this one. For the most part, public school educators seem to be stuck in a rut. Simply having a computer, digital projector, and an interactive whiteboard in a classroom is not an effective use of technology in 2012, especially if that projector is mounted to a wall or the classroom ceiling. Yet, some believe that simply getting students to utilize these technological devices is providing them with the skills they need to be college or work ready. I beg to differ.
Educational technology discourse in 2012 must take the next step. Public schools must get their students to utilize technology to network with others, to collaborate with their peers throughout the country and world, and to begin to create products and solve problems in ways that were unthinkable less than a decade ago. Educators need to realize that available technologies are simply the vehicles to give their students the skills they need to be successful citizens in the current and future decades. Having students use these technologies as word processors, projectors, or to make visually pleasing graphics and presentations is not enough. We need to get our students focused on networking, collaborating, creating, and problem solving, and to appreciate how to utilize the current technologies to get these things done.
Then again, if the politicians' proposed modifications to teacher and administrator evaluations continue to prioritize accountability test scores, can we blame schools for using technology as expensive overhead projectors? I'm interested in your thoughts, so please leave a comment.