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A few years ago (well, maybe a little more than a few), there was a well known mantra in the DOE, “Don’t teach technology for technology’s sake.”

Basically the idea was that we shouldn’t be farming out our students to the tech teacher to get an extra break! Totally agree with this. After all, technology should be used to facilitate learning and communication, and the place to do this is in our classroom. But the other idea was that we couldn’t teach the students how to use a particular tech tool as a main objective. The learning objective had to be in a core subject area, and if we were able to incorporate Kid Pix or internet research, then that was a bonus.

My question is: Why NOT teach the students about a tech tool as a main objective?

Realistically I know that if you are teaching someone how to use a tool, and they don’t use it, then they will forget. That’s happened to me many times, and I’m sure it’s happened to you. Practice makes perfect and all that. The context needs to be meaningful and purposeful. In today’s world, use of technology IS meaningful and purposeful. One just has to take a look at India and China and any other number of foreign countries. As educators, we need to make sure that our students are able to recognize technology’s importance in today’s society. It’s the same thing we do for reading, writing, oral communication, mathematics, science, history, geography, the arts, etc.

I know. One more thing to add to the already overflowing plate. This addition, however, is one I’ll gladly take on. For our students’ sake.

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