Monday, September 12, 2011

Embracing Technology: Are iPads the Future of Learning?

Embracing Technology: Are iPads the Future of Learning? | iPad.AppStorm
There has already been considerable debate over the value of embracing emerging technology in education, particularly the use of iPads in schools, but is this debate simply over method or is there something more drastic taking place?

If the use of iPads can significantly improve the engagement of students, and increase their ability to explore subjects and develop in their learning, then are we doing them a disservice by being slow on the uptake?

3 comments:

Gabriel said...

Yes we are. I know the learning process is more enjoyable and defiantly retain it more efficient and I 39 yrs old. Imagine what a younger student achieve.

Amanda said...

As an educator, I would be excited and intrigued if I had the opportunity to use Ipads in my classroom. Students need to be able to use technology to further their learning. They need experience accessing technology tools to become world-competitive. While looking through blogs about technology in education, I found a post about applying Bloom's Taxonomy through Ipads. http://5ddigitalcomm.wordpress.com/2011/09/01/blooms-taxonomy-and-the-ipad/

Even though I embrace technology, I am also concerned about the dependency on education creating a lack in number sense. I have students that have grown accustomed to punching numbers into a calculator without thinking through the question and answer. Incorporating a more powerful "calculator" like an Ipad in class may create more of a dependency on technology and a decrease in number sense. "First, our own experiences in classrooms and our mathematical backgrounds suggest to us that an over-dependence on calculators may have a negative impact on the development of some mathematical skills" (Miller, Pease, Ruby & ShapiroImpact, 2004). Until we can have further research on the effects of technology in our classroom, teachers will have to experiment how best to use technology in their classroom.

Miller, D., Pease, M., Ruby, D., & ShapiroImpact, R. (2004). Impact of Calculator Use on Mathematics Achievement and Attitudes in Elementary and Middle School Education. University of Massachusetts-Lowell, Graduate School of Education. Retrieved from http://webpages.charter.net/druby/Papers/Final_Paper_V9.pdf

Angela said...

Yes we are doing our students an inservice by being slow at getting technology, specifically Ipads, into the classroom. As a current teacher, who already utilizes a lot of technology in my classroom, I can attest that we are still not adequately preparing students for their future careers in a world that is heavily laden with technology. There are people out there that feel that too much technology takes away from students learning valuable problem solving skills and/or technology takes away from students learning proper social skills. However, I believe as a teacher that this is where the educator needs to be educated. The educator needs to learn how to incorporate technology in a variety of ways to address various learning styles and he/she needs to structure some lessons around using technology and some lessons without technology. An article that addresses this very issue uses math as the subject and states that “A balanced mathematics program should provide students with a range of knowledge, skills, and tools. This includes a variety of operations, such as the use of computational procedures, mental mathematics, estimation, and the proper use of a calculator” (BSmarte, 1). The article goes on to say that students learning to use paper and pencil is important, but other methods need to be equally important because students need to have the knowledge and skills to succeed in the business world and that world is now enriched with technology.

In conclusion, I believe that our students definitely need to have the opportunity to learn many different skills utilizing technology in order to stay ahead and be successful in any of their future endeavors. Additionally, I think that educators need to stop being so afraid of technology and what it may or may not be preventing and start incorporating it into their lessons because we are doing an inservice by not equipping our students with the ever changing demands of technology in our society.

References: BSmarte. “Managing Technology: Is Technology in the Classroom Good or Bad?”. http://www.bsmarte.com/issues/managingtechnology.pdf