These days, rarely a day goes by that I do not read an awesome post defending learning over technology. I just read Aviva’s fantastic post about putting expectations before toys, loved Zoe and Rodd‘s posts on a totally awesome analogue manner of teaching digital blogging, and was blown away by my buddy Danika’s gorgeously consice podcast episode on putting pedagogy ahead of the tool. I too mentioned this not long ago on this blog, but I feel compelled to add my two extra cents again.
It’s funny because I recall a time not long ago when the discourse of our PLN was far more entrenched in tool adulation. “Here’s another great, new, free web 2.0 tool …” “Check out this cool website …” “Here are some Delicious bookmarks for awesome IWB resources …” When I prowl through my Twitter feed these days I feel more likely to come across “5 Reasons SMARTBoards Suck …” “The iPad Pokes Out Pedagogy …” or “Why 1:1 is NOT the Answer …” in fact, it might even be a retweet of my own post. Perhaps this is a natural evolution, and even serves as a great analogy for your typical tech integrator’s continuum with digital tools. As my good friend @slouca11 says, it’s only when you get past the novelty that true learning begins.
To get past the novelty, however, you have to experience the novelty. We shouldn’t forget that integrating technology meaningfully often is preceded by a blissfully childish stage which resembles my daughter’s love of the ice cream shop, not because it’s the most important part, but because it is an unavoidable, perhaps even essential one. It’s a little disingenuous of us to suggest otherwise.