21st Century Learning

In recent discussions about using technology in the classroom, more specifically in our writing of things like essays and research papers, a controversial issue has been whether we should allow students to use this new tech in their writings and research. One side of the scale there are those who say that we should allow this use of tech because it’s a useful tool for students, we just need to inform them on how to use things like search engines and how to look the “right” information. From this viewpoint those who support this idea of thinking are basically saying that “look the tech is out there, it’s up to us as educators to inform students how to properly do research online.” Then on the other side of the scale we have those who are quick to ban or diminish the use of such resources, like the fabled Wikipedia! According to the followers of this argument sources like Wikipedia will always be out there, will for the most part remain an unreliable source of information. This argument argues that the internet is a vast source and we simply can’t educate all students on all sources to use and not use. In sum the issue happens to be whether or not we should incorporate tech (specifically search engines) in our classrooms.

My own view is that as educators we are preparing our students essentially for the world after school, thus it is our job to attempt to keep current with societal trends and incorporate them in our classrooms. Though I agree that doing so does add to an already hectic and load baring regiment that educators already have. I still maintain that adding the use of tech and teaching how to use it in terms of educational benefit would greatly add to the learning of students. For example showing students the difference between a credited site and just some random site that google pops up. Although there will continue to be those who argue that “the ole fashioned” way of using books and physical text is better, I would reply that almost anything found in the schools library is online in some way shape or form. This issue is important because it is an issue that will be effecting us in ED 270 as future educators ourselves.

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One comment

  1. wenzelm · February 4, 2016

    Again, I’m liking your use of the They Say/I Say template, but wonder if the issue is about whether we integrate search engines into our classroom, or is it how we evaluate and assess the sites we use on the internet. Your argument seems to say that digital sources are just as valid as traditional resources–which I agree–but that it is up to us to teach those skills to our students. Would that be a fair summary of your argument?

    To make this posting even better, I would go back to this week’s website and find additional links to add to this posting- were there any resources that might come in handy?

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