When people ask me if they really need to teach their students technology, I look at them as if they are crazy, and then say something like, “Of course we need to teach our students to use technology – it’s our moral imperative.”
“Moral imperative?” you ask, thinking, “That might be a bit extreme.”
Maybe. But hear me out. If students are using technology on their own, left to figure it out by themselves, who is teaching them how to use it responsibly? We hope their parents are, but do we really believe this?
In order to be a literate being in today’s world, don’t you need to know how to navigate the relevant technology of the day? With that said, I believe part of the literacy of today’s world is knowing how to use technology to make information relevant in today’s world. If our students leave our schools not knowing how to use technology, we have done a grave disservice to them.
This does not mean that technology becomes our only curriculum. It means that we teach our students our content using the technology relevant to our discipline.
That doesn’t even cover the equity issues involved with teaching students technology. If students don’t know how to use a computer because they don’t have one at home, we need to teach them. If students can’t afford computers at home, we need to give them time to use it. If we don’t, our students will graduate without the skills they need to lead successful lives.