Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Forget technology, it's all about teaching.

As far as teaching ideas are concerned there is nothing new under the sun. Blogging is just an updated version of the diary or class yearbook, podcasting, our generation’s version of amateur radio, and of course home video has been around for at least 30 years. However, the major breakthrough has been the vast increase in usability of such technologyy and an equally impressive decrease in cost. The result being that ideas that were developed only for the most privileged parts of the developed world’s educational systems can be used in a much broader context as the cost and ease of access to these tools has changed.

The $1000 dollar video camera has given way to the $60 dollar digital camera, the complexity of say, ham radio, which meant that free, long - distance communication was the preserve of a tiny, techno-savvy minority has been replaced by the demotic simplicity of the internet.

I think that the technology has matured enough to be used in every aspect of our classroom experience, it's not necessary to have a computer lab full of the latest PCs, one medicore desktop or even our own laptop can transform a boring book or lesson into a wonderful learning experience.

2 comments:

daniel said...

agreed, there's nothing new going on when it comes to technology. we're just finding different ways to do the same things.

that being said, don't you think that on the global scale, tech is still concentrated in the hands of the few?

teacher dude said...

I agree that tech of any kind is the preserve of a minority. If you imagine that there are billions of people who haven't made a phone call, let alone surf the net.

Interestingly, I feel the problems I'm up against here in Greece are probably the same in many parts of the developing world. The good news is that while it is difficult, all these high-tech ideas we keep on reading about can be adapted to less than perfect conditions.

The key is application of teaching ideas rather than technology.