At a reading conference I attended last week, I was reminded by one of the presenters of a now so new yet rather timely quote by Howard Gardner and Shirley Veenema, who wrote about the fact that technology does not necessarily improve education.
Take a simple innovation like the pencil: One can use it to write a superlative essay, to drum away the time, or to poke out someone's eye.
(Veenema & Gardner, 1996)
So I’ve been asking myself, is the IWB in my classroom a piece of furniture that I use, but that could easily be replaced with a chalkboard or chart paper? Or is it indeed a support for an active, collaborative, creative and challenging learning environment for my students?
With such a steep learning curve on both the technology aspect and my "new" instructional approach to math this year, I’m not sure I’ve done such a great job with either.
True, I am not poking out students’ eyes with our IWB, but I’m also not sure I am writing any superlative essays with it.
At the very least, I’m going to read this article, and think about how I can make the board more of a student-user support.