“Meaningful Learning with Technology” – Chapter 1

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     The big takeaway that I took from this chapter is that students in the classroom should be learning with technology, not just from it. In other words, technology should not just be something that takes the place of a teacher in relaying information, but rather an additional tool that students use for learning in the classroom. In the chapter, they word it like this –  “If schools are to foster meaningful learning, then the ways that technologies are used in schools must change from technology-as-teacher to technology-as-partner in the learning process”(7). In some ways this idea seems really obvious, but I admit that I had never thought about it like this before. When thinking about using technology in the classroom, I generally thought about it as another way to present ideas or concepts to students. This chapter really opened my eyes to the much larger purpose and depth of technology.  I also often forget that technology is more than computers, phones, or other hardware. Technology can be anything that engages students in learning.

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        The discussion of the different organizations that have worked to develop guidelines for meaningful learning with technology was very interesting. I was surprised by the extensiveness and detail of the standards created by these organizations just because I never knew that anything like that existed! A common standard mentioned by all of them was critical thinking and problem solving skills. I think these skills are especially important in the classroom, because all other types of learning can better take place if students are constantly working towards mastering the skills of critical thinking and problem solving.  

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