Monday, April 27, 2009

I visited Brian Benzinger's article on line, which was suggested by Dr. Burgos. This article contained some great ideas for how to incorporate technology into classrooms of all types, ranging from young students to graduates in higher education. What was so interesting about this article was that it contained many testimonials from veteran teachers, novice teachers and students, discussing what specific aspects of the technology were helpfu. I loved the idea of having a student observe the dissecting of a frog, for example, or visiting a location thousands of miles away.

Benzinger also discusses the value of sites such as Wikipedia and Youtube, which are often filtered out by school districts, teachers and administrators. I admit that I am guilty of this offense, as well, following the common misconception that these sites are harmful than helpful. However, Benzinger discusses the importance of teaching our students how to be discriminating consumers of these sites, assessing appropropriate and inappropriate material with intelligence and caution. The far easier tactic is to merely make many websites off limits, but we are also limiting our students' access to potentially valuable information. This train of thought has made me realize that it's more important to teach a student how to navigate the web with caution and knowledge than to simply say "don't go there" and I'll make sure that you don't by limiting your access. We are not raising a generation of critical thinkers, but rather, of passive participants.

This article was informative and interesting to read. For example, I'm viewing Wikipedia in a different light. Although I've used it in the past as a resource, I would certainly NEVER admit to it (ha ha). My dirty little secret is now out in the open!

1 comment:

  1. Kathy,
    I hope that the concept of teaching our students how to navigate the web instead of denying them access becomes more widely accepted. It is really a critical skill.
    Dr. Burgos