Have you seen this one? On the highway? I saw it for the first time last night on my way home from Open House and I took a major double take. That is, of course, its intention – drop that phone and drive! (And no, I didn’t take this picture – I figured I could Google it much more safely than scrambling to take a picture of it going 70-some miles per hour.)

While it’s a great message in an of itself, I had to apply an educational twist to it. I know that I said in my first post that I was going to stay away from my technology crutch – but this one was just too good. Plus, I’m pretty sure I only committed to not sharing tech tools or ways to teach with technology…and this is certainly the opposite of that message.

Get your head out of your apps.

I love this. It is exactly what I’ve been trying to articulate about technology use in the classroom but never really seemed to find the right way to say it. Don’t get me wrong, I love tech and I think it has tremendous value in the learning environment. That said, extraneous app use – or “tech for the sake of tech” as I have been calling it – is distracting us from our mission.

When I work with teachers, especially with regards to technology, there is always one question that I ask first: “What is your purpose?”

From there, we can discuss activities, authentic experiences and assessment, and opportunities for collaboration while keeping the central purpose as our ultimate goal. The apps don’t drive our purpose, our purpose drives our apps (or whatever is appropriate to successfully realize your goal – maybe even just a pencil and paper…crazy).

There’s a lot fighting for our attention as educators. Don’t complicate your job further by feeling like you have to add apps to the mix just because they are there. Let’s get back to the basics and focus on using tech when it truly provides opportunities for us to redefine learning.


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