|Most classrooms still look like this
2010 photo of a 4th-grade room.
Most of today’s educators were born too soon. We are not digital natives. Moreover, developments that you might call “market forces” in the last several decades actually have held most teachers back from fully participating in the digital revolution.
As a result, we really don’t “get it.”
All too many of us are still teaching as if it’s 1980 . . . except with a computer cart in the corner, to use sometimes. Oh, sure, some of us have “smart boards” where our blackboards used to be, and some of us are required to keep in touch with parents via email.
But most educators just fundamentally see digital media (by which they mean “computers”) as a sort of add-on.
- We still think of textbooks as physical, printed-and-bound objects.
- We make our students turn off or put away their cell phones when they come to class.
- We restrict access to the Internet, except for narrowly-defined assignment objectives.
- We often absolutely ban Facebook, Twitter, and other social media from our classrooms.
- We demand undivided attention when we are speaking to the class.
- We believe that, to be readily available, facts must be memorized.
- We call it “cheating” when our students look up answers.
- When we make websites, they are almost invariably really lame.