The title caught my attention:
When not to use technology: 15 things that should stay simple in education
I agree with the author that we know better than to use technology for technology’s sake. An unfortunate pressure that some teachers face when their school invests in new educational technology is that they are asked to substantiate the heavy financial investment with student academic achievement gains that can be attributed to the use of technology, thus demonstrating a good return on investment.
While there have been researched and documented benefits in integrating technology with instruction, this article was a good reminder that certain aspects of using technology for learning need to remain “simple” to help students in their learning.
Of the 15 reminders, numbers 4 and 5 resonated deeply with me:
#4 – Don’t use technology when it decreases student interaction.
Technology as a tool can lead to incredible social connections for learning. The author rightly notes that technology can also reduce the amount of face-to-face interaction because people are “connected” online. We need to remember the important value of interacting, and learning, in a physical learning community. This is partially behind my thinking why it was so important to include on-campus classes in our hybrid community.
#5 – Don’t use technology when it reduces the chance of failure.
I believe that mistakes are a necessary part of the learning process, and ideally, an important step in self-discovery, too. In fact, I often encourage my students to take risks and make mistakes as part of their learning. This can help them arrive at a deeper level of understanding and learning. For these reasons alone, we shouldn’t simply rely on technology as an “easy way” to arrive an answer. Students need the challenge and feel the joy of success when they overcome and learn through their failures.
These are two important reminders. Why don’t you check out the remaining reminders? Do you agree with the list? Which ones resonate most with you?