I have been secretly enjoying the juxtaposition of technology in education that I have seen recently.
In one moment I can find a 3D tv that costs less than my 37″ flat screen from just a few years ago, and then I can find some VCR tapes that have arrived from our resource center (and can recall my dad paying more for our first VCR than either tv cost).
Just walking down the hallway at my school I can see what I have referred to as the 3 eras of computers in schools and again, I secretly smile at the evolution (ivolution?) of technology in both its design and it’s use:
Era 1 (1980-2000). The desktop lab: The heart and soul of computers in school. A lab that students would go to, have a set amount of time to do some work (and not always connected to classroom learning)
Era 2 (2000-2010). The mobile lab: wanting more if a connection to using tech inside classrooms, a lot of attention and $ were paid to get laptops onto student desks. Good use of portable devices, but nasty discussions about operating systems, students dropping them and not enough talks about pedagogy.
Era 3 (2010-now). Post PC. BYOT (bring your own technology) and a focus on personalized tech is still slowly creeping into schools. But when it does, students have opportunities unmatched in previous years. No need to go to a lab (though my school has one for students to collaborate around bigger screens) or wait to sign out laptops (which interrupts the learning/curiosity stream) and instead embrace the learner view of www – learning whatever whenever wherever.
And I get to continue to smile as I see two learners having a book talk – one with a paperback, the other with an ebook.