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For Math Teachers by Math Teachers

Archive for March, 2013

“Students First, Not Stuff” by Will Richardson

March 3rd, 2013 by Alice Fisher


Recently, Carolyn White shared with us at RUSMP an excellent article titled “Students First, Not Stuff” by Will Richardson.  The article is available here.

Richardson writes about how this “moment of technological explosion raises a host of important questions for education leaders that speak directly to the way we think about the potentials of technology in school.”  If we think that technology is simply additive, the nature of our questions as math teachers will be: Should we get iPads or laptops? Casios or TIs? Which apps are best to teach fractions?  These are important questions, but Richardson posits that real issue is not about the best gadgets or latest technological fads.  It’s not about “layering expensive technology on top of the traditional curriculum.  Instead it’s about addressing the new needs of modern learners in entirely new ways.”

Richardson encourages readers to start long-term, broad conversations about “what teaching, learning, and being educated mean in light of the new technologies we now have available to us…to understand the implications fully, we need to start with the questions that focus on our students–and not just on the stuff.”

I encourage you to read his article and respond to the question:

“What does it mean to be MATH-literate in a world where knowledge, information, and facts are easily accessible in a student’s back pocket?”

You can watch Will Richardson’s TEDx talk at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ni75vIE4vdk.