Mitch Resnick (MIT Media Labs) explains the relationship between technology in the classroom and learning most succinctly in Rethinking Learning in the Digital Age. He explains why we must rethink our approach to education to fit with the new possibilities of the digital age because too often we're not taking advantage of the possibilities.
- We tend to use technology to deliver education to the learner which is not the most productive way of learning.
- Technology has potential if used as the material to create and build things in the world - learning as the active construction of new knowledge. Building on the theories of Piaget.
- Let learners explore new ideas themselves.
- Sophisticated mathematical and engineering ideas typically studied in graduate courses can now be brought down into secondary level through students using technology to build and simulate ideas.
- With technology you can build a quick prototype, try it out, see if it works.
- There's a constant spiral between ideas in your head and being able to try them out. Technology expands the range of things we can design and therefore expands what we can learn.
- The boundaries of where we can learn and with whom we learn are being broken down. People with a variety of ages and abilities are learning with each other. Peer-to-peer learning.
- Changing classroom practice and teaching methods won't happen without effort.
- Schools put up lots of boundaries that inhibit the opportunities to learn - between disciplines, between age-groups, between inside and outside school.
- The child must be in control of the technology. If the child is not in control, the learning is not being enhanced to the extent that it could be.