Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Digital Disconnect

Download and read over the full article following the link on the 524 web site for The Digital Disconnect: The Widening Gap Between Internet-Savvy Students and Their Schools. If you haven't downloaded from the website, here is the link for you.

Respond to the post initially. Then, keep referring back to the comments and respond and comment on what your classmates have offered. Each of you needs to respond to at least three other responses as well as your initial contribution. Let's keep the discussion moving forward. This is an extremely critical topic that we, as technology leaders, must be able to articulate if we are to make technology a norm in our instructional practices. Remember, this is a blog, not a threaded discussion.

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For this professional conversation and as educators who recognize the importance of infusing technology into the everyday instructional experiences of students and teachers:
  • What points in this study "hit your button" in either a positive or negative way?
  • Select one of the virtual metaphors and discuss it in relation to your own practice.
  • Possible solutions
As you form your responses to the above items, consider the following:
  • How does this directly apply to your own practice?
  • Has your work at APU assisted you in the integration of technology into your professional work?
Remember, this is not a threaded discussion, but a blog. I encourage you to mention the person's name at the beginning of your comment so we can more easily track comments and responses.


  1. This article really highlights the importance of using and teaching technology in schools. If students are already using them so much outside of school, yet for school purposes, teacher's should take that as a hint and start incorporating internet usage in their class. There is so much concern about students using the internet for dangerous or inappropriate reasons, but there is no real action taken against that except to keep blocking them from using the internet. I must say quickly, however, some blocks for the internet are very crucial and should be used. What I'm saying is that teacher's should show students the appropriate way to use the internet and software. They should instruct the students how the software and internet can be used to achieve the best possible information and/or creations. For example, teachers can show students the value of blogs and/or tweets. Both of these resources are used in business as marketing tools to give information out to customers and draw them into the company. This is important for students to learn and use. The teacher can use these tools to improve classroom communication and share knowledge amongst the other students. Another problem with teacher not instructing students on how to use the internet and software is that these students are becoming far more advanced in internet resources than the teachers. The classroom is becoming boring. The world keeps moving forward, so likewise, the students desire to do so too. Education provides the world with the future-this is the very last thing that should be straggling behind. Shouldn't teachers want their students to turn into more Steve Jobs, Mark Zucherberg, Bill Gates, etc? I think it's a very scary mistake for teachers and administrators to not teach students about how to use the internet and software. We need to make brighter, smarter students to continue making the world a better place.

  2. It is difficult for me to evaluate the article because I do not know what the in class internet limitations are. In addition, I have no idea of what in class internet assignments were given that bore the students. I would need some examples to be able to give further assessment.

  3. The point that hits my button is that the article was written in 2002 and I feel like my district, though a smaller district, has improved their technology so much. We are becoming a district of digital natives or at least (FDP- fluent "digital" proficient)

    We are still behind however we have integrated technology into our classrooms little by little. Every classroom has a digital projector and document camera. We have digital subscriptions to Discovery Education and BrainPop. We use the "digital paths" for our social studies and science.

    The metaphor that strikes me as whats next is the virtual lockers. Our high schools have an internet based program however in the elementary schools we just have a classroom folder on our server. I think we could remedy the inability to take work home by requiring or providing a 2g thumbdrive for every student 2-5.

    What APU has done to extend my technology integration has been getting me hooked on Wiki's. I really enjoy having a place to put my students work. I've also learned how to make interactive portfolios on Adobe that have been useful in my Data position. Lastly my FAVORITE new bag of tricks: VIDEOS! I use them all the time now. The kids love seeing themselves on the screen.

  4. One point that hits my button in the article “Digital Disconnect,” is that students in schools today are digitally connected in every way. We are in the 21 century and integrating technology into the curriculum means educators are no longer the center of attention as the dispenser of information. This is complicated because many educators are not computer literate and many schools do not offer professional development in technology. Not to mention every district places value in different areas of education. Educators today must take the initiative and educate themselves in technology like I am at APU.

    The metaphor that strikes me as interesting is the metaphor of a virtual textbook and reference library. Using technology in this manner allows many more students to be actively thinking about information, making choices, and executing skills than opening a textbook that is probably outdated due to funds allocated to a district. My classroom has 5 computers on a good day. If we could have a set of net-books for each student, the use of technology is unimaginable.

    APU has helped me tremendously with the integration of technology. In my EDUC 515 class, Evolving Educational Technologies, I have learned how to create a video podcast. My students are currently working on an Explorer’s project where they use movie maker to download pictures and music to tell a story. I’m looking forward to EDUC 524 Curriculum Design and Delivery because HyperStudio has caught my attention and I feel it could be real useful in my classroom.