Our kids don't have a choice. And neither do we.
Scott McLeod, J.D., Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of Kentucky. He also is the Founding Director of the UCEA Center for the Advanced Study of Technology Leadership in Education (CASTLE), the nation’s only academic center dedicated to the technology needs of school administrators, and was a co-creator of the wildly popular video series, Did You Know? (Shift Happens). He has received numerous national awards for his technology leadership work, including recognitions from the cable industry, Phi Delta Kappa, and the National School Boards Association. In Spring 2011 he was a Visiting Canterbury Fellow at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. Dr. McLeod blogs regularly about technology leadership issues at Dangerously Irrelevant and Mind Dump, and occasionally at The Huffington Post. He can be reached at scottmcleod.net.
[T]his generation of kids in our schools is the first not to have a choice about technology. Most of us grew up in a time when technology was an add on, and for many of us, we still see it as a choice, especially in education. (Just the other day I was at a meeting of about 25 school leaders and teachers to discuss how social learning tools can be infused into an inquiry based curriculum and only one person was using technology to take notes...me.) I look at my own kids and I know that technology will be a huge part of their learning lives because a) they want it to be and b) they'll be expected to be savvy users of the devices of their day to communicate, create and collaborate (among other things.) They're not going to be able to "opt out."
We may not feel comfortable in a world filled with technology. We may not like the way it's changing things and, even more, how fast it's changing things. We may not like the way it pushes against much of what we've been doing in schools for eons. But our kids don't have a choice. And if we're going to fulfill our roles as teachers in our kids lives, neither do we.
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