We here at RobotsLAB.com love our electronics devices with all our hearts and we believe in them with zeal, but we recognize that without committed teachers they are nothing but inspired gadgets.
Recently we came across an article by educator David Jakes in The Smart Blog For Education that wonderfully articulates our feelings about our devices and teaching children.
Educator Jakes opens the article with a scene familiar to us all, a room full of kids sitting in front of new devices--laptops in this instance, but it could just as well be our BOX--waiting impatiently for the teacher to decide what he intends to do with them. According to Jakes, too often the teachers intent is to use them with programs and concepts already in classroom use. This, he says is a mistake.
The question, he says, should not be how does the device work with “things they already do,” but rather, “What should the student learning experience be?”
Use these new devices to “Prototype an experience, put it out there, find out what works, what doesn’t, and refine and adjust. Make it better.” Or, to put it even more succinctly, "Place the student and the learning at the center of the first question that you ask. Make it about them and what they should experience in your school as a learner. Don’t make it about whether or not the device supports Shockwave.”