Teachers ban new technology while some embrace

Samantha Brown
Staff Writer

“There are a lot of tools like cell phones and social networks,” said Steve Leftridge, English teacher, about technology. “We need to embrace technology not be afraid of it.”
School rules say cell phones and iPods should be put away during school or they can be confiscated or stolen, and social networks like Facebook or Twitter are blocked.
However, some teachers like Leftridge are using a new website called Edmundo. It is a website set up like Facebook where students can post questions, comments or check homework.
“People our age are more interested in electronics. It keeps us more interested and involved,” said freshman Melanie Grasso.
“The school is behind other schools in technology,” said Dr. Jon Clark. “We aren’t far behind though.”
Clark said the staff is working on getting Smartboards in every classroom. Clark also isn’t opposed to students bringing their computers in, but some students fear for the safety of their computer or “it’s easier to just write your notes.”
Leftridge went to a York High School in Chicago and saw them using Twitter to talk to each other and discuss any topics. They could communicate and see anything else going on.
Leftridge said, “The teacher would say get your phones out, and they would tweet their comments up to a board in the front where they could read everyone else’s comments. Then he would say put your phones away.”
“I think more integrated technology would be nice, but it’s hard because there are a lot of technical problems that go along with it,” said sophomore Kyra Navia.
Freshman Carl Wickman said, “I think teachers should use more electronics or technology in the classroom because today, children use technology so much that it’s almost natural to learn from it. Like when we watch TV, most of the time we remember what they were talking about or what they said.”
“I have a Smartboard and a document camera in my room. I use them almost every day. I rarely use my chalkboard anymore,” said Jeanette Hencken, science teacher. “I am a very visual learner and over the years have learned more about how others learn. In my class I try to present the information to my students in multiple ways so I increase the chance of everyone learning the concepts. Using these devices helps a lot.”
Hencken also said that her classes use digital cameras, laptops, spread sheets and PowerPoint. She also is looking forward to the possibilities of using live.com to share information with my students and for them to work together as learners.

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