Thursday, April 10, 2014

When Electronics Replace Teachers

In the past, educators have taught classrooms and given home work with the use of just regular chalk boards, note book, pencils, and the use of the public libraries. Now a days, I can't even imagine doing a writing assignment without the use of Wikipedia and Google. Living in the 2014, electronics have seem to have almost completely taken over our lives, especially in our education. In fact, there are many new ways to teach now a days with the use of laptops, smart phones, and tablets.

 I remember when I was in middle school, my math teacher had just gotten a new smart board to use instead of just a regular board. To me, that began the whole process of having electronics in my life of learning. The "Real" World Flipboard brings up an article about Augmented Reality. This article discusses the idea of schools letting kids in with their smartphones and tablets and use them to their advantage. By creating games and videos, the electronics that teachers seem to hate in their rooms would instantly become a learning tool for them. One example being a reality game in which middle schoolers can walk the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus using mobile phones to see footage of Vietnam war protests that occurred in the same campus locations.

Though this is a great idea in a way,  and I know that as the years go on it may become a reality for future generations, I can't help to question somethings. One being that will the kids actually learn. In the article, it talks about a game where students go on a quest through a local zoo to try to find a virus thats going through the animals. As they play, they read and learn about local ecology and biology. Though this does sound interesting, I doubt that the kids will actually read any of this info. Growing up, I never wanted to read my games, I just wanted to play them and the reality is that kids these days are worse. They will just press buttons and wait for something to happen, barely paying attention to what they are doing.  The kids would probably also just spend their time on Facebook or something instead of actually doing their work.

The other concern is that if we focus on apps and videos to teach our kids, what will happen to the teachers. Being payed so little these days already, eventually the idea of teachers would just be a thing of the past. With programmers and IT, schools would just be able to program schedules into machines about what to show and teach the children. Many movies and cartoons even mention helmets where the knowledge can just be placed into a child's mind somewhere in the future. And the reality is that with the rate technology is growing these days, it wouldn't be too much of a surprise.

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