Sunday, March 31, 2013

Blog Post #10

Mr. John T. Spencer
Above is a cartoon by John T. Spencer, you can find it on his blog Adventures in Pencil Integration. To fully understand the cartoon I highly suggest you look into his posts. The comparison of Papermate vs. Ticonderoga is a reference to the subject of tools used in the classroom. Pencils are the cheap and safe route as opposed to the new resources technology provides us today. I admit new technology can be intimidating but strictly using pencils and paper in the classroom is depriving students knowledge they not only enjoy learning but NEED to learn. This cartoon presents the question many of use are faced with every day, "Should I spend more money for quality product, or should I settle for the cheap, easy to break product in hopes for the best result?" Shouldn't we always go with the better, quality product (i.e. education) for our students? New technologies may seem difficult at first but with the proper guidance you would be surprised how easy and informative the use of inter-web can be.

Why Were Your Kids Playing Games?
Mr. Spencer also wrote a post titled "Why Were Your Kids Playing Games?". This post is a conversation between Mr. Spencer himself, and his school principal. As we all know our minds run on stimulation; well Mr. Spencer's approach to stimulate the kids while they were learning signaled a red flag to his principal. Mr. Spencer was seen engaging in an exercise that required students to read and draw; this was seen as fun or as a game to the principal. Why? Because, like many other principals in the US, Mr. Spencer's principal is not concerned with stimulating his students. He is more concerned with the standardized test scores. It can be easy to get lost in the importance of test scores when there is pressure from the school board and administrators, but one must take a step back and think about importance of the children. The point of the standardized tests is to make sure the child is up to par in his or her grade level-it is not a competition to see which school has the top scores in the community. We should be more concerned with trying new ways to assist our children in the classroom instead of frowning upon them and continuing the dreadful "memorize, test, brain dump" cycle that the students of this generation are in.

Scott McLeod
Who is Scott McLeod? "Scott McLeod, J.D., Ph.D., is widely recognized as one of the nation’s leading academic experts on K-12 school technology leadership issues." - Scott McLeod's bio
To learn more about Scott McCleod you can read his bio by visiting the link above. One of his posts titled Don't teach your kids this stuff. Please? might make some people raise a few eye brows, but not me. In my opinion Mr. McLeod is mocking the ignorant people in his post, and when I say ignorant I mean ignorant in the sense of refusing to progress with today's world. In our daily life there is a need for children to be technologically savvy, and in this post Mr. McLeod mocks by saying:

"no connecting, now

no social networking

or online chat

or comments

or PLNs

blogs and twitter?

how self-absorbed

what a bunch of crap

and definitely, absolutely, resolutely, no cell phones"

Those statements alone sound ignorant to me, but at the beginning of this semester I too was skeptical about social networks, online chatting etc. Now, thanks to EDM 310, I am aware that all of the things Mr. McLeod said in his post "Don't teach your kids this stuff. Please?" are good things for the 21st century student.


  1. You misuse the word principle. The person is a principal which is what you should be using in your post (3 places). Principle, on the other hand has several meanings: a fundamental truth or proposition;
    a rule or belief governing one's personal behavior; a law or rule.

    Metaphors and sarcasm. You appear to understand. The first metaphor can be best understood by PC vs. Mac, however.

  2. Hey Abigail,

    I agree with you 100 percent on the metaphor between paper mate and Ticonderoga. It is a shame that more teachers don't spend more money on education. I know that we are all faced with decisions on whether or not to spend more money or get more quantity, but when it comes to the future of America I think we should use more money.