There's a Commentary in the May 2 issue of Education Week: "Technology Can Transform Schools." (http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2007/05/02/35kelly.h26.html
) Note the end section: "TalkBack."
You can voice your opinion.
I hope someone from our network does, because reading that article makes me very, very tired--the policy makers need so much educating.
It's a topsy-turvy world. We, really, should be the ones making policy. Our enlivened network could give numerous examples of the power of this new technological learning. Not just in "...the effectiveness of reading and math software products," but more broadly yet. We'd be eager to reflect carefully upon the nuances of what would make good educational policy. The debates would be lively and heartfelt. We'd have a multifaceted perspective, rich with resource investigation and use. We'd have experience in thinking together within a focused and professional educational network.
That talk, on my part, is pure idealism. But I do believe it--I mean it.
When I read an article like this one from Education Week and consider doing the "TalkBack," I don't even know where to start.
Apparently, "...extensive research, development, and testing (are) needed to use that hardware effectively." Test it? Test what? How would that be done? Use the hardware effectively? That's infinitesimal compared to what else is going on. Why talk about software packages to teach particular skills when there's an utterly new approach to the "whole of education" going on?
It's hard not to get discouraged. Sometimes I think American Education is not even nearing the launch pad. And yet, Education Week is a very important news magazine. This article is not to be discounted... there's a testing of the waters going on. And there's a place for us to talk. If the question is, "What is the use of these machines, anyhow?" shouldn't we answer? But how can it be said?
I am speechless. I need more patience. How in the world should one begin?
The author (Henry Kelly) deserves credit for taking an ice-pick to the mountain.
I double-dog dare someone to explain how the tests can never catch up, and that that shouldn't even be the emphasis. The power is far beyond that... (For people of other languages, do you know what "double-dog dare" means? It means if you do, I will.)
An awakening is due.