April 21, 2010

School as Reality-Free Zone

This essay showed up in my local paper this morning: 2 limit txtN, jst taK awy ph. (English Translation: To limit texting, just take away phone).

Here is the comment I posted:

"I think it would be far more interesting and useful to use the phones for instant polling, backchannel responses, and finding other ways to embrace and teach ethical use of a technology they are clearly excited about than to simply try to remove them. Why should school be a reality-free zone? Think of the phones as an opportunity in information technology teaching and ethical use. Plato made the same disparaging remarks about new-fangled book printing technology thinking it would lead to the inability of students to remember anything or to be indoctrinated with dangerous ideas. Perhaps in the not-too-distant future we will look as absurd for wanting to try to ban a ubiquitous communication tool in our schools."