Sunday, February 12, 2006


Welcome to technopaideia, the blog of Craig A. Cunningham.

I am interesting in the relationship between education and technology, but also in education itself and in technology itself: in thw ways we learn and the tools we use.

But more than that, in the ways our society decides to educate and the tools our society chooses to use.

I'll be writing about these topics in this blog.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Applause to those students who have developed not only the skills needed but the interest in creating their own web pages; …on the other hand, it’s sad that we as parents and teachers haven’t been able to capture that enthusiasm and channel that knowledge into more acceptable demonstrations of understanding outside of the classroom.

As a middle school Web Design teacher, I was challenged on a daily basis with the task of finding activities that would instruct as well as excite and motivate my students. Integrating their activities with classroom learning goals and objectives, I’d hoped to introduce them to a more exciting way to study and explore what to many seemed to be humdrum learning activities. Many times I’d get discouraged because all my students seemed to be interested in where music videos, games, and, believe it or not, I even caught a few shopping on the Internet. Needless to say, everyday was a learning experience for me as I struggled to keep busy fingers and inquisitive minds on acceptable paths.

Late in the school year, I had to take a week off. That was the first I had heard of the site, ‘MySpace’. Apparently, a few of the students had taken this as an opportunity to introduce their personal web sites: This to the chagrin of the administration and specific staff members who took a pretty good amount of abuse from the students. Kids can be brutally honest and sometimes cruel when expressing their feelings and opinions. I must say that I was appalled when I heard some of the comments made on the web sites, but this was tempered, (I admit) with a degree of pleasure. It was akin to the father who gets called to have a conference with the principal because his son participated in an all out brawl in the school cafeteria. Dad’s angry, of course, but just a little pleased to find that his son had whooped two or three boys much bigger than he.

As a result of these activities, one of the students was expelled; mainly because of specific comments he had placed on his website. His parents got a lawyer and, as it turned out, a student can’t be punished in that way for comments he places on a personal website created in his home. Needless to say, that student did return to school and to Web Design class. He was, in fact, one of my better students.

I agree with Bill G. Of course, kid’s use of this tool should be monitored, facilitated, and guided; and, a lot of parental education is needed. We can’t make technology readily available in schools as well as homes, tell them that they have the world at their fingertips, and then expect them to behave like responsible adults. If it were that easy…