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Running head: EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY PHILOSOPHY PAPER

Educational Technology Philosophy Paper

Katie MacDonald

EDUC 204-A

Dr. Emma Cody-Mitchell

Carson-Newman University

April 12, 2018


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Abstract:

Educational technology is a tremendous resource that all educators can

definitely use to their advantage to help engage students and connect to them

using each students’ own personal learning styles. Technology allows for teachers

and students alike to gain the information that we desire or need immediately. The

large reach of the internet also allows us as people to become more connected

with others and share information that we have gained with as well. Technology,

however, with these new connections and effective information sharing comes

with massive responsibilities. With these new responsibilities we need to become

digital citizens and as educators we need to teach the future users of this

technology how to be digital citizens as well. Without the self-discipline that

comes with being a digital citizen, technology can easily be a distraction and

hinder student learning growth. On the other hand, with a good understanding of

how technology and how it can be used to enhance student performance.

My philosophy on educational technology is very simple. Technology

should only be used in the classroom if it is exploited in a way to enhance any

student’s ability to learn. The integration of technology into the classroom should

be in an effective manner used to connect with all students no matter what

learning style they possess. New and unique technologies in the classroom can

give educators the opportunity to develop their student’s digital citizenship skills.

An editor for Capella University writes, “Using a computer, tablet, or other device
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encourages self-directed learning and creates an active participant in the learning

process, rather than the passive learners found in a lecture environment.

Interactive lesson plans can help turn “boring” conceptual subjects like math and

science into fun, engaging, and educational activities for students” (2017). This

editor is saying that using technologies such as a computer or a tablet can improve

and encourage the participation of all students in the lesson at hand. This is done

through the use of technology allowing for an interactive and all-inclusive lesson

that can keep the attention of the whole classroom.

Maloy, Verock, and Edwards in their textbook, Transforming Learning

with New Technologies, bring up a good counter point of using technology. In

Chapter 2 they discuss the digital divide which effects students that are low

income families that cannot afford all the technology one needs to access for the

classroom (Maloy, Verock, & Edwards, 2017). This is a huge problem when

trying to incorporate technology in the inner city or in more rural communities.

However, the school should be able to provide some filling for this gap by lending

students laptops or having a library that has a few computers and access to WiFi.

I do not have a specific licensure area, because I do not plan to teach in a

formal classroom in the future. Therefore, I cannot fully answer how I can use

current technology with my students, but I can answer how current technology is

affecting me and my classmates. My generation has been blessed with incredible

amounts of technology that can be used to connect people, share information, and
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make learning an equal opportunity for everyone. We do not have to go to the

library and spend hours researching through a pile of old dusty books because we

have a database and a super search available to us wherever we have Wi-Fi.

Technology is so much a part of our lives that it plays a major role in

improving the four essential life skills needed to be successful: collaboration,

creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving. Lee Watanabe-Crockett writes

that students or any working mind “Wants to be challenged and inspired in their

learning. They want to collaborate and work with their peers. They want to

incorporate the technology they love into their classroom experiences as much as

they can. In short, they have just as high a set of expectations of their educators as

their educators have of them” (2016). Watanabe-Crockett’s ideas hold very close

to my own in the way that everyone wants to be apart of the learning process.

Whether that be in the classroom or at work, no one wants to feel left out or

ignorant of what is being verbalized.

Again, I do not plan on being a teacher, so I feel that I am not fully able to

answer this question completely and fairly. However, if I was to imagine that I

have a theoretical classroom to integrate technology into my lessons, my goal

would be to assist and inspire my students through lessons that taught how to be

creative and how to solve problems effectively using their knowledge and

resources available to them due to their 21st century skills. I would use programs

such as google docs and google forms to share and evaluate the lessons I have
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taught. I would also use videos and virtual reality programs to better educate and

inspire my students.

Another standard that would be followed in my classroom is to “Create

experiences for learners to make positive, socially responsible contributions and

exhibit empathetic behavior online that build relationships and community”

(ISTE, 2018). I would promote and be a model for excellent digital citizenship

for my hypothetical students. Nevertheless, all those that use the internet,

especially new users like young students, should be taught the safe, legal, and

moral use of the digital highway and how to decipher what information they find

on there is accurate and valid. A topic more suited for older or more technology

savvy students is how to create and maintain engaging professional growth and

leadership using technology and how to apply that to the basic 21st century skills

they learned in school to real life situations (ISTE, 2018). I would apply this

standard to my classroom through Google Forms and possibly portfolio managers

to better enlighten the students for future jobs and interviews.

Constructivism.

I admit though, I do prefer the caveman stylings of the traditional pen and

paper. To me the action of writing the lecture into notes helps me memorize and

retain information more effectively. Dustin Wax writes in his article that, “As

we’re writing, we create spatial relations between the various bits of information

we are recording. Spatial tasks are handled by another part of the brain, and the
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act of linking the verbal information with the spatial relationship seems to filter

out the less relevant or important information” (2018). So as the brain processes

what you are listening to and writing down it uses spatial relations to pick out

what is the truly necessary information.

This is not to say that the use of technology would be outlawed in my

classroom as demonstrated above. I like the idea of having online assignments

such as blogs to ensure that every student participates. I also like using videos and

3D models that can demonstrate the concept I am trying to teach. For example, I

could use a YouTube playlist that has videos of scientific experiments or

recommend to my students other types of videos like Crash Course that would

help solidify the information taught that day. Some professors at the Yavneh

Academy came up with a great lesson plan of using 3D technology to teach

Human Biology. The students would use the amazing tool called 3Doodler pens

to create both healthy and diseased organs of the body (Burack, Hirschhorn, &

Lichtiger, 2017).

I would also encourage my students to take advantage of their digital

resource for studying purposes. Such as rewriting his or her notes into a word doc

or creating flashcards on Quizlet. I know for a fact both of these strategies help

me on any quizzes and tests that I take and I would love to pass that information

to my students, if I ever have them anyway.


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I would advocate for equal access to educational technology, digital

content and learning opportunities and use them to meet the diverse needs of all

students (ISTE, 2018). If I were ever to teach in classroom setting, I would try my

best to manage the “participation gap” that is an epidemic across all schools and

grades by first evaluating what type of learning my students lean towards and then

using that type of learning to nurture their individual interests. I can see myself in

that way going a more constructivist route. Meaning, I would also try not to have

just one-sided opinions. I would want my class to participate in the instruction and

give their different view-points of the topic at hand or let them communicate what

strategies they have used to better understand the material. This allows the lesson

to become more of a discussion and brainstorming session rather than just another

lecture where I drone on about the symbiotic relationship of coral and the algae

zooxanthellae.
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Works Cited

Burack, T., Hirschhorn, C., & Lichtiger, C. (2017, June 26). Using 3D

Technology to Teach Systems of Human Biology. Retrieved April 10,

2018, from https://conference.iste.org/2018/program/search/detail_sess

ion.php?id=110843945

Capella. (2017). 5 Reasons to Incorporate Technology into Your Classroom

[update]. Retrieved April 6, 2017, from https://www.capella.edu/b

log scublog/benefits-of-technology-in-the-classroom/

ISTE. (2017). ISTE Standards Teachers. Retrieved November 6, 2017, from

https://www.iste.org/docs/pdfs/20-14_ISTE_Standards-T_PDF.pdf

Maloy, R. W., Verock-OLoughlin, R., Edwards, S. A., & Woolf, B. P. (2017).

Transforming learning with new technologies. Boston: Pearson.

Watanabe-Crockett, L. (2017, May 18). The Critical 21st Century Skills Every

Student Needs and Why. Retrieved April 06, 2017, from

https://globaldigitalcitizen.org/21st-century-skills-every-student-needs

Wax, D. (2018, January 03). Writing and Remembering: Why We Remember

What We Write. Retrieved April 10, 2018, from

https://www.lifehack.org/articles/featured/writing-and-remembering-why-

we-remember-what-we-write.html

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