Thanks for sharing Ms. MK Jackson!
Below is an extremely salient article regarding very heavy-handed, top down approaches to controling students’ use of the iPad. It speaks to what Mr. P was saying on our Wednesday iPad session about the two different approaches to classroom management: control vs. awareness. This article confirms my belief that our role as educators (or as I like to call us when I am feeling grandiose- elders) is not to restrict the iPad the way you would the consumption of cookies in your three-year old, but give them the tools to make a healthy, nutritious and balanced meal.
I also like how they emphasize that even if we try the finger-shaking, ruler on the back of the hand approach, students’ will find a way to use the iPad in the way they want and, the way that it was designed for:
…Students, for their part, frequently cite the over-filtering of their school networks as one of the major impediments to their using technology to learn.
Even though much of their unfettered iPad usage in these recently publicized “hacking” cases involved, as The LA Times put it “non-schoolwork” and as NPR dismissed it “entertainment,” it’s important to recognize how students do learn with technology. It isn’t simply a matter of a digital version of analog lessons and readings—something implicitly presumed by the Los Angeles’s school system’s plan to “limit the tablets, when taken home, to curricular materials from the Pearson corporation, which are already installed.” Students listen to music and chat with friends while they study. Their iPad “hack”—their work-around—demonstrates their desire, not to mention their ability, to do just that.
Other points that resonated with me:
- Students’ are going to find a way around unreasonable control and filtering no matter what we do- we can either keep trying to control it or find a better use of our time.
- That by trying to control the device, we are basically locking up its full potential in a cupboard and hiding the key instead of giving them the freedom to explore the device and figure out for themselves its potential.
- That the iPad, for all its great uses, does not lend itself to students’ actually digging in the guts of the machine and getting their hands dirty with some coding, a setback in terms of creating a generation that programs the computers instead of being programmed by them.
Not that I think it is easy to teach or guide students in a responsible, effective use of technology. But what I realized as a mother of two kids is that if they don’t get it the first time you say it, repeat, repeat and repeat. And then talk about it some more, and then repeat, repeat repeat repeat and then make them watch a documentary on it or cite an article stating how it effects their brains (stats never hurt!) and then make them talk about it and then keep on questioning them and then repeat, repeat repeat until it is embedded in their brains. Not easy no, but better than cutting their use of technology at the point where they can own it and make it theirs.
Read the article and tell me what you think!
See on Scoop.it – ipadyoupad
The limitations imposed on these devices inhibit students’ natural curiosity.
See on www.theatlantic.com