Monday, April 8, 2013

The Opposite of Awesome

The picture above was shared on Facebook by a valued member of my Digital Learning Network (DLN). In the picture, my friend’s daughter is dutifully transcribing her digital writing to paper, so she can turn it in to her teacher.


Preparedness for college and careers comes in many forms--I understand that. I get it. What I don’t get is how pervasive and valued the traditional is over the modern.

The word curriculum, etymologically, is Latin based and is rooted in a meaning around a course or path to be run. The path here, as evidenced by this single image, is leading to irrelevancy. It’s ok as a teacher to not know all that is on the digital horizon, but to ignore it or to minimize its use, here in the 2nd decade of the 21st Century, is outrageous!

When technology allows us to do something markedly better or easier than we ever have before, it almost seems like there is an air of deceit in using it. Modern tools are more likely to be seen as ways to get into trouble, or cheat, or worse.

Over the years though, through the centuries, the pencil has gotten mankind into more trouble than any computing device. Just ask Alice Walker or Salman Rushdie. Or Toni Morrison or D.H. Lawrence. Or even Suzanne Collins or J.K. Rowling. But the pencil is still the belle of ball, even today.

Would we forgo the use of a lighter and start brandishing sticks to rub to make fire? Why not? It’s authentic!

This picture just blew me away. But I’m not going to dwell on it...I’ve got quills to sharpen and scrolls to roll before I leave work for the day.

Picture courtesy of Crista Anderson.

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