Dean Shareski is the author of the blog Ideas and Thoughts from an EdTech. I read his blog on a regular basis and follow him on Twitter. Recently he posted a podcast in response to a question posed by Ben Grey, and that question was “Why Technology?” Dean responded to this question with a couple of thoughts that really resonated with me. I’d like to share how and why I agree with Dean when it comes to answering “why technology?”
My first thought regarding this question is we should use technology to create. We have the ability for students to create that we’ve never had before. The tools at our disposal today are more than ample. I think about the many alternatives to written projects students can produce…podcasts, blogs, photo stories, web pages, wikispaces, digital storytelling, presentations, comic books etc. We need to provide students the opportunity to create. Creating the digital form of a great story, a demonstration, or a wonderful piece of artwork is so much easier today, it seems imprudent not to offer this opportunity in classrooms.
I believe a second aspect of technology in education is the ability for others to access these digital products. Providing students with an authentic audience makes a tremendous difference when producing digital content. In addition to an authentic audience, publishing these projects also allows for legitimate feedback from others and the ability to connect. Publishing is important, but the ability for others to connect to that information and consume it in their own way is valuable! Whether that consumption is to analyze, critique, or validate it; this access by others that publishing provides is vital.
I encourage you to visit Dean Shareski’s blog mentioned at the beginning of this post. He has some great ideas and insights about educational technology. I also invite you to share your thoughts here about the original question that inspired his post and mine…Why Technology?