Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What BHS Students Say About NY Times Piece on Waldorf's No Tech Approach

The Learning Expectation Above Would Never Be Seen In A Waldorf School. 

It is amazing to me that people can get so heated in a debate regarding technology use in schools.  Frankly, I am offended by anyone that would cling to either side of this argument. As is usually the case, the answer is somewhere in between the two extremes. Also there is no one answer that suits all learners. We should count our blessings for the fact that we are living in an age that provides learners more choices and not waste our time defending the black or white in such debates where answers are firmly embedded an ever-expanding gray area.

Having said this, I was happy to read the perspectives of some of the students in Mr. Marcinek's Web 2.0 Class.

"The teachers and supporters of Waldorf all came off as if they just despised technology because they simply don't believe in the potential it has to offer. I can definitely see the point that Waldorf is trying to enforce, however they give off the impression that they are against change and progression. They seem to only see one way a student can learn, when in reality no student learns the same way."
"A blended approach would be ideal. It would have the best of both worlds." 
"I think technology is a way to make things easier, but it doesn't always apply to everybody, and that is the case with this school. I think it's all personal preference, some people prefer to use technology, they think its helpful to their studies; some people think it's a huge distraction to what they do; and some, like me, don't really have a preference as to what kind of learning philosophy the school utilizes."  

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  1. I can't pass up this opportunity to respond. I'm thoroughly enjoying the technology and delighted that we all have the IPads with many wonderful free Apps. I'm integrating technology daily into my courses. As a Foreign Language teacher, I love that the IPads have Apps which allow students to record their voices (an integral part of a foreign language class) and send them to my gmail. I can view and listen to student work away from school. My students have produced some great Podcasts using these devices.

    Last week my French II class was studying some of the great landmarks in France, i.e., some of the great hotels, restaurants,cafés, tourist attractions, churches, museums, etc. We immediately went to Google Images on our IPads to see these famous places from our seats.

    I love integrating technology in my teaching. But, at the same time, I love my French textbooks and do not wish to get rid of them. I do not want to "throw the baby away with the bath water". I've invested many years into searching for great texts. I still use them daily as well in my teaching.

    I'm grateful to be at a school where we promote technology. I'm currently taking an on-line course. Had it not been for my involvement with technology here at BHS, I would be totally lost in this course. I'm appreciative of the BHS Ed Tech Camp this past summer. It was a lifesaver to me.

    Vive la téchnologie à cette école!!!!

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