I just read the article link above today from the New York Times, about Grading the Digital School, In Classroom of Future, Stagnant Scores. Basically the article brings up the fact that in one school district that has been heavily funded for new technology, showed a decline in the standardized testing scores over the last two years. As I read the article, I thought that our content must drive the technology, not the technology driving the content that we want students to learn. Technology is just the tools that we use– like a pencil, pen, or a protractor. But the technology in and of itself should not push what the students are learning. I have often wondered why are we teaching 2nd graders to do a presentation, when maybe there would be a better way for them to communicate with each other and to share their ideas. It may be true that test scores will go down at first, but if we are still teaching the content, but integrating technology with it, then in the long run it can only help students to learn and eventually the scores will show it.
Integrating technology into education in the 21st century. My name is Grace Yamato. I have been teaching for more than 20 years, with 14 years of experience teaching in an international school. I have experience as an elementary teacher, middle school, and high school. I have been teaching students to use technology for the past eleven years in computer classes and digital media. However starting this year, my role is to help elementary classroom teachers to integrate technology into their curriculum. I learn by doing and I teach the same way that I learn–through exploration and project based learning. I have been playing on a computer since they first became available as “personal computers” in the early 1990’s. I hope to teach students how to “play” and to learn how to use technology to become effective collaborators and productive thinkers.