in Education

No place for ‘gadgets’ in the classroom?

Gadgets

BBC News reports that both the Children’s Minister and the NASUWT’s General Secretary of Teaching have urged parents to ensure Christmas toys stay at home. The latter, Chris Keates, is quoted as saying, “can be a real headache for teachers when they are trying to get everyone settled down to start learning. Teachers would be grateful if pupils just brought a pen.”

This is fairly short-sighted and in fact does not reflect the view of all, or even most, teachers. At the time of revolutionary devices such as the iPhone and the benefits of ‘games’ such as Dr. Kawashima’s Brain Age we need to be looking towards new pedagogies to replace the ‘teacher-at-the-front’ model. The two spokesman above have shown how out-of-touch they really are with education in the 21st century; it’s time to start harnessing the power of the technology students own to really personalise learning. :-)

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  1. I hope these comments were taken out of context. When I think about the prospects a classroom equipped with iPhones or something similar, it makes complete sense. First of all, if the students have the technology, this means schools spend less on general ICT and can focus on specific aspects of improving computer literacy (using high-end software). Second, booking a suite to go on the web when the students have the capabilities in their hands will not be missed, especially when you have reduced lesson time. Third, if the above statement is true, it really does show the gap between the policy makers, representatives and the environment teachers work in. Yes, there are in some schools where the use of ‘gadgets’ may disrupt learning but to close off the possibility is wrongheaded.

    I really hope the above quotes were taken out of context. :)