Much of how we approach learning has stemmed from the pragmatism of John Dewey and his pedagogical creed (1897). We also know that good teaching with technology tools, has very little to do with the tool, rather effective integration of technology stems from using good teaching strategies. What would Dewey say about technology in learning today?
"Education, therefore, is a process of living, and not a preparation for future living."
Learning should be connected to student's authentic everyday lives. Not isolated knowledge in a classroom. Dewey emphasized finding ways to help students see how their school learning could help them grow and contribute to society today (not for a job 20+ years away). Using technology tools that help to EXTEND learning experiences to bridge school learning and everyday life.
“Give the pupils something to do, not something to learn; and the doing is of such a nature as to demand thinking; learning naturally results.”
Learning is active, rather than passive. Students engaging with tools and people to construct knowledge is what we should strive for. ENGAGED learning is active, hands-on, time-on-task.
Dewey might have emphasized using technology tools that leverage students' abilities to become ENGAGED active-on-task learners as well as to EXTEND learning outside of an isolated classroom or textbook into the real world.
Liz Kolb is a clinical assistant professor of education technologies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. She works with over 150 preservice teachers every year on integrating technology into K-12 teaching.
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