I too read the Stuff article about Tairua School placing technology 'centre stage' at their school with some misgivings and have been intrigued with the responses to Kelvin’s critical posting aboutthe use of computers in education and also to his followup posting.
An attractive room environment featuring current research/inquiry studies and students ideas expressed through art and language is vital. Some call the room environment the ‘fourth teacher’ (after the teacher, the material to be learnt, and the ideas of other within the classroom and online).
A teacher’s classroom is an important ‘message system’. If it is full of teacher distractions, posters etc it is the teacher’s class. If it is full of well displayed inquiry, language and art work , all featuring the students identity and ‘voice’, then such an environment is not a distraction, it is a celebration of student thinking
What does it mean to be human in an increasingly digital world? What might be lost?
Einstein has written, ‘Imagination is more important than knowledge’ and it is imagination that is at stake our education system today. We must be careful not to throw out creativity with our obsession with technology. We need to protect at all costs a humanistic education – the holistic Kelvin believes so strongly in.
This holistic learning has all but been lost - not helped by the introduction of National Standards, the continuing use of demeaning ability grouping and formulaic 'nest practices'. This emphasis on standarisation is not providing the necessary personalisation required to 'future proof' students.
The comments to Kelvin's critique about the use of computers show this is an issue worth debating.