Saturday, September 29, 2012
Cart, Horses, and iPads
I will pull a NASCAR metaphor. In racing, crews choose tires to fit the conditions of the road so their driver will have the best chance to win. In education we invest in the photofinish camera instead... Only problem is with the wrong tires the photofinish camera views will be very sad.
As an iPad fan I have a request from Apple. Districts are asking Apple to create an ecosystem that will allow students to participate in assessments on the iPad essentially locking other features so students could not "cheat" (on the nature of cheating another time). I am begging Apple to not succumb to this pressure. If you will create such an ecosystems you will undoubtedly sell more iPads but they will be used in all the wrong ways for all the wrong reasons. Experience tells us they will have a whole set of closed apps that will disable the joy of exploration and cross validation. At the same time such devices will be unavailable for instruction months each year so students can participate in testing.
It is time to put the horses in front of the cart. It is time to invest in the right tires so all students can get to the finish line.