Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Forget pencils, iPhones are the new way to write essays!

The title of this post says it all - pencils are old news, iPhones are in!  I love technology and its influence on education but never thought I would listen to my brother “write” his essay by talking to his phone and having it appear on his iPad.  I thought I was “with-it” and was on my way to keeping up with technology, especially in education...but apparently not.  My discovery of this amazing technological advancement happened last night.  I was working away on my language arts author unit study and all of a sudden I could hear my brother saying “this paper will discuss...the studies did not...” and I thought to myself, WHO IS HE TALKING TO?!  I walked into his bedroom and I see him with his feet up on his desk, relaxed in his chair, and talking to his iPhone with words appearing on his iPad.  I questioned what in the world he was doing...and to my surprise he said “I am writing my essay”.

Since when is writing talking to your iPhone?

I continued to watch him “write” his paper and within 20 minutes his paper was done and he was editing his paper on his iPad – AMAZING!   I was in awe of his technological knowledge and sheer brilliance to use his time effectively.  Instead of sitting and typing up his essay, which could have taken him a few hours, he decided to spend more time editing and adding to it and less time typing – so smart! 

I see SO many great ways that this could be used in the classroom.  There are many students, including myself as a student, who would benefit from writing our essays and other responses through “talking”.  I can only imagine the benefits this could provide for students in regards to self-esteem, feelings about language arts, and their abilities to communicate their ideas.  I understand that the skill of writing is important but with our world becoming so technologically advanced I believe this skill and opportunity should be available to our students.  Then, we should let them make the decision about the ways in which they will communicate their ideas – students should have a decision in their education.    

So next time I hear “big words” coming from my brother’s room I will not get as freaked out and instead appreciate the technological tools he has to learn with!

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