Light Offerings

Some thoughts on the importance of critical thinking in edtech

Posted by jturner56 on August 16, 2015

According to Kevin Donnelly (Australian, 15 Aug 15) IWBs are the norm and research shows ‘virtually no effect’ of edtechs on student achievement. Donnelly draws on Susan Greenfield, whose book Mind Change (2015) points to the harmful effects on of digtechs on child brain development. In a similar vein, the latest Larry Cuban blog ( 13 Aug 15) return to the ‘old chestnut’ of no solid evidence decisively confirming positive effects of edtechs on learning outcomes.

If one’s focus is closed knowledge within industrial thinking then there may be a case. Or viewed through a rear-view mirror. But lets start with a countervailing contribution from Megan Brooks  (Medscape 14 Aug 15) who slammed Greenfield’s contention as needing ‘less shock and more substance.’

More positively, revisiting Kath Murdoch (justwondering 28 Jan 15) highlights the importance of relationship development, involving students and nurturing curiosity, connection and interests. Taken up by Chris Goldspink (Incept Labs 29 Jun 15) when exploring the attributes of effective learners. Openness and readiness to learn being at the heart.

In an age when the Internet is seen as an unrealised, unrealisable infinity of space providing a landscape that decentres our world while also propagating a personal domain that recentres it (Josh Cohen’s 17 Jul 15 review of Laurence Scott’s The Four-Dimensional Human: Ways of Being in the Digital World)
school and teachers are like surfers caught between the rip of limiting systemic demands (see for example Why NAPLAN was the worst idea ever NEWS 8 Aug 15) and the hope and optimism that Goldspink notes as necessary for effective learning. Trying to find balance to help move our children forward in trying times. Not helpful when the turnover reflects a lack of societal support (Frank Bruni 12 Aug 15).

Do you see a future limited by anti-intellectuals (John Elder 16 Aug 15) or development of critical thinking honestly appropriate for a better future?

Just some thoughts from this week’s anti-ruminations.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: