Thursday, June 4, 2015

Lest Week in Tech - Technology Innovation

This is one of my favorite teachers, and this boat school is an innovative solution to a seasonal problem. One might wonder why we don't have these innovative schools in America. Probably the same reason we don't go out back and teach in the dirt with sticks. we just don't have to. Schools are designed to maximize the teaching we do. Could there be a better design, possibly, but not for the teaching we do currently.

Technology is thought of as a disrupter in education because it comes into the design we already have and makes it possible to change. Many people see this change as computers teaching students. it isn't.
For about 100 years there has been a belief among behaviorists that if we could build a smart enough machine, that it could take the place of a teacher. Many believe and have believed that computers will fill that role.

Tools like Plato have been around for about 40 years and they haven't disrupted schools. Actually, it has been assimilated. Massive online courses were going to disrupt education. The year of the MOOC was 2012. It was the ultimate school choice. It hasn’t disrupted higher education. Instead is seems to be morphing into a college prep for connected students, at least in America. It has been assimilated and is coming to high school.

The reason these tools have not disrupted education is because they don't actually make any changes in education. When we look at technology in education if we are looking at completely upending our entire system we are looking for too much. The change, the disruption, is more subtle.

The real disruption with technology in education is the ability to transform traditional education. The R in SAMR. The "goal directed transformation" in the Arizona Technology Integration Matrix. Some would go so far as to say it is a transfer of power from teacher to student. I would say it is taking the responsibility of learning off of the shoulders of the teacher and putting it squarely onto the shoulders of the students.

edit - I realize the title might be a bit misleading as this post was written to be a follow up to a notification to the teachers I work with that my position has been eliminated. Thus my last week in tech with them

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