I visited the teacher training session by School of Education to give a keynote about the use of iPads in the classroom, based on my experience during our iPad-project in january of 2012. A lot of interesting people showed up, wondering what kind of value the iPad has to offer for future teachers. I tried to explain what we did during our project and why I thought the iPad made a contribution in the learning process of the students.
I found that most of the participants were open to the idea of using a device like an iPad, however there was also someone who thought tablets are just the next technological gizmo, not to be taken to seriously by education in general. Education should “stand up” to the technological companies and ask for a decent technological device specifically made for the classroom. Conspiracy theory or not, I regretted this remark because I find it’s somewhat narrow-minded. The iPad, or tablets in general, are of course gizmo’s of technology-land, but they actually can bring something to the classroom! And isn’t this what it’s all about? Using devices, technology, any tool for that matter, that contribute to the learning process. Waiting for a device “specially” made for education is foolhardy and pointless, simply because life itself isn’t all about education, right!?
Anyway, we had a little discussion going on, but due to time restraints we couldn’t explore the matter in-depth. Interesting also was most peoples opinion about a couple of educational propositions during the plenum. We were asked what we thought about certain solutions in the field of education for actual problems, like: “A learning management system should be composed by experts of numerous different fields of work?”. Where the absolute majority of people agreed, I disagreed! Connectivism thought me one thing and that is, let students work in their own environment! Don’t lock them up in a certain environment, but go out there and let them experience different ways of learning. Create the ultimate personal learning network!