When I was at school I learnt to read and write, absorbed knowledge from everything I did and saw, and learnt through play and exploring. I loved to draw, or scribble and I loved books before I could even read them. I was fascinated by the pictures, the variety of letters and words, and that there was something new whenever I turned the page. Do children today have the same love of books?
Today, children are spending large amounts of time on computers and tablets, including reading books in a digitalised format. I met a relief teacher who was called into a school to teach a year 8 science one day. She was left notes on what pages the class needed to read and what they needed to do for homework. She walked into the classroom and told the class the lesson plan. The students had no books. Instead, they each pulled out their laptops and opened the required software where they could view the textbook. Hold on, what happened to text books in the classroom? And as for their homework, the only information she had was “log online to see the class assignment”.
I understand it’s more cost effective to have expensive textbooks digitalised, not to mention not having a heavy school bag to carry around, but when did technology takeover a good old fashioned paperback? What happens if there’s a power failure, or the laptop/tablet battery fails?
There are apps out there to help teach your child to write, but what about teaching them to use pencils and paper? Do schools still start out with teaching children to write with a pencil and then when their handwriting is of an appropriate standard, they are awarded their pen license? I remember the day when I ‘graduated’ from using a pencil to using a pen, and it was exciting. Now do our kids graduate from one stylus to another?
As time rolls on, technology is playing a more prominent role in our children’s classrooms. I love technology and the innovations being implemented into schools, such as including interactive electronic whiteboards, laptops and tablets for regular use, placing homework online, creating online student forums, and recording lessons for video replay and analysis at a later date. These are great and love that my children will benefit from these in the future, and much more.
My questions still stand: where does the prominence of technology leave the basics of when we grew up? Will pen and paper be left behind in the future for good?