Okay, I am writi8ng another article. This time about the "Seven Deadly Sins" of Educational Technology.

What do you consider a "sin" when it comes to education technology?

Perhaps not using equipment?
Not enough training?

Your answers will help me in my article.

Thanks everyone!


Tags: 2.0, ed, education, sin, tech, technology, web

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I think the greatest sin may be when teachers don't bother to develop the knowledge needed to effectively connect the use of technology with the specific subject matter under study. History for example can utilize different technologies than science. The development of this skills takes much thought. This thought could ideally be undertaken through online dialogue.
At risk of getting shouted down, I wonder if one of the sins of technology in the classroom is assuming that it makes sense at any age -- so long as the application is designed correctly. As incongruous as it might seem, coming from a person that runs a Web-based business focused on education, I am personally skeptical about the usefulness of technology among children at an early age. Most of the educational software that I have seen for children say under the age of 10 or so strikes me as shallow at best. Watching my own kids (9, 7, and 3), I can see huge differences in their ability to think abstractly and therefore to engage effectively with technology. I'm no luddite, but I wonder whether kids should be until they get to middle school.
I agree that much of what is available for elementary kiddos is "shallow at best". I've been teaching for 23 years and using technology in writing my curriculum for about 12 years. Since I teach gifted elementary students I am acutely aware of the need for rigorous, real and relevant curriculum; differentiated from their regular classroom work. Look at the latest project our 6th graders did, you will see that there is the possibility of in-depth study. CSI:Cemetery Scene Investigation

We've done other amazing projects with kiddos as young as third grade.
I think you may have a point about the abstract thinking, but I think the cut-off maybe 5th grade (10 yo). In the non-2.0 world, I had a discussion with a fourth grade colleague. I was telling her how meaningful many of my students discussions about our reading selections were. She said she was unable to have those same sorts of discussions with her class of fourth graders. They were unable to extrapolate what their read about to their life experience (or vice-versa) in the way my fifth graders could. She felt this was because they weren't at a developmental stage where they could do that sort of thinking.

You can listen to some of my classes discussions from last year http://nicholasfifth.edublogs.org/podcasts
In my limited experience.... one of my sins was assuming that all the students would be confident and ethusiastic about using edtech. I overlooked the fact that (as a number of posts note) I enjoyed self learning, that I wanted to teach above "will this pass" and could see the value of edtech to students learning in the long run. I forgot to "count in ones" and instead only took on a class viewpoint. Tim.... how is the list looking?
But in addition to the great answers already given, what really bothers me, are those who are unwilling to learn how to use the equipment effectively, who are unwilling to attend training sessions. It is not limited to the older teachers as some may think. I see many young teachers stuck in the same rut of teaching the way they were taught "because it worked". Also, those who teach tech skills in isolation with no attempt to use technology to meet the standards.
I agree,
However: is there space for teachers who won't join this bandwagon. Perhaps you can move on in the hope that the non-adopters will be effective with their own toolset, or that they'll become jealous of other's progress, and make the move because of that, or that they'll simply die out (and hopefully not in admin or the curriculum and research branches!)
Trying to make Web 2.0 "tools" fit into your existing teaching and not focusing on WHY you are doing it. It's not about the tools - it about learning and how technology supports learning and offers new choices for collaboration.

Inspired by George Sieman's blog entry: It's not about tools. It's about change.

"It's the change underlying these tools that I'm trying to emphasize. Forget blogs...think open dialogue. Forget wikis...think collaboration. Forget podcasts...think democracy of voice. Forget RSS/aggregation...think personal networks. Forget any of the tools...and think instead of the fundamental restructuring of how knowledge is created, disseminated, shared, and validated."
Agree. N.
Educational Ergonomics

I wholeheartedly agree that the WHY is vital! I call it "educational ergonomics" in an article in a German teacher magazine. We need to focus on what we are trying to achieve in the classroom and then and only then look at what technology is best for that. I may be a big sheet of paper, a small pile of matches or a CommSy room with an attached wiki.

Just like you select a different table for eating at, working with a computer or filing a piece of wood to shape, you select the learning tool for your purpose.

So maybe the "sin" could be phrased as "disregarding educational ergonomics"?
I just found out that is seems to be a standing term in English:
looks like a worthwhile read.
It is absolutely about teaching. One thing that we cannot overlook is making sure the students know why we are using the technology. I require that all my students submit their papers electronicically. In reading through their muddiest points this morning, I found one student who didn't understand why I added this additional burden to the class assignments. It took only a few minutes to explain my reasoning and then the student was happy to learn the new technology and comply. We need to have a rationale, but the students also need to understand why.



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