In a short time we have given every primary school pupil their own tablet, at school they are called learning tablets, in the form of an iPad or Chromebook. The mobile phone provides adults with fast and intuitive apps and ways to navigate, write and read SMS messages, as well as be entertained.
It’s cheap to buy for municipalities, and publishers can provide updates to apps continually. Isn’t that better than textbooks? Some claim this, and believe that the introduction of tablets provides “digital efficiency”.
As someone with a professional background in IT and a father of children who’s been involved in this for several years, I think tablets are the wrong tool for this.
Education Association reported On April 17, 35 percent of primary schools are seen as fully digital, while only 3 percent of teachers want it that way. iPads and Chromebooks are a distraction in class and at home. All targets are grouped and compressed into a narrow, small rectangle bounded by photodiodes.
Tablets are significantly less efficient In many subjects other than the traditional teaching aids and tools. Just ask parents of students who have students with iPads in elementary school today.
This is done naively and without research because it is assumed that all future professions will require “digital competence,” whatever that means. Yes, digital will be integrated into most professions, but preferably without us noticing. Good technology is simple.
Example It is the digitization of agriculture. The milking machine measures the health of the cows and analyzes the quality of the milk. The same cow also has digital fences when grazing. It’s so easy to use and set up that anyone can do it, including today’s farmers who didn’t get an iPad in elementary school. But where you fence in the best pasture possible, and practically run the cows, that’s a different matter entirely. It is agricultural engineering.
This is the essence. IT engineers like me write algorithms and design microchips to work in the best possible way for farms and animals. We do this in cooperation with the farmer, who is an expert in his field. The best solutions are created in collaboration with professional experts in several fields. And the farmer should not need programming.
Digital competence is the least of my worries that kids won’t learn in school. What about all the other things they lose out on because we push so much teaching and homework onto the screen? Why are there so many children who have never had a bowel and smell the smell of polished wood? Or who has never played a proper musical instrument and learned the notes? Why do we abandon the long reading of texts in books and handwriting?
This is already happening now. We are missing out on the breadth of Norwegian primary schools and education for all vocational groups that we will need in the future, because we fear that children will end up digitally left behind. Incorrect.
We need to expand the tools Students are at their disposal, just as they are in a professional life. In order to build “digital competence”, we must introduce the subject of information technology in schools. Give kids appropriate work tools such as a PC or Mac, but wait until fifth grade and up. Then they acquire basic reading and handwriting skills in their bodies and brains first.
Introducing the topic of information technology, students should learn to act as IT engineers by writing on whiteboards, using sticky notes, working in working groups, and creating prototypes on paper.
Have the students investigate human and social factors When introducing new technology, as well as when developing applications, games, and programs. Then they can finally learn to code. This is how the processes are done in good projects in the IT industry.
Internet knowledge and online literacy can be learned both in theory and in practice before grade 5, with good digital equipment suitable for explicit teaching purposes in school. Improve learning in all subjects by providing students with the right tools for what they are going to learn.
Are you still in doubt? I challenge all adults to work a full work day on a mini iPad with a 9.7-inch screen.
It should have a scratched and bubbled screen cover like the students. All work tasks must be solved in applications on the tablet. You are not given a keyboard or digital pen, so you have to type on the on-screen keyboard. When you get a photo of copy paper, write on it with your finger in a functional handwriting. All notes must be made on screen.
Do you want to become digitally qualified from this? Or do you get frustrated and want to get rid of the whiteboard because the tool is counterproductive to learning and productivity?
The way digitization has happened is totally irresponsible, and everyone blames everyone. Now the central authorities must take a greater share of the responsibility, and the government must take immediate action to correct the mistakes made when rough shortcuts were taken in the 1:1 digitization of the primary school.
We cannot afford to have immature public experiments with our children.
Remove iPads and Chromebooks from elementary schools and introduce information technology as a subject.
Continue the discussion:
“Web specialist. Lifelong zombie maven. Coffee ninja. Hipster-friendly analyst.”