Tools for Educators

Teachers know that the curriculm reform pendulum swings back and forth many times over the course of a teaching career – driven by fads, fears of falling behind in standardized tests, and the marketing drive of the education industry, among other factors. Teachers also know that durable gains in students’ learning come not through curriculum innovations, but rather through the positive influences of dedicated, caring teachers who are able to connect with a child and spark their love of learning.

Enabled by cheap hardware and improvements in digital tech, no trend has overtaken K-12 schools as rapidly and thoroughly as the push for edtech, and the associated trend toward computer-based  “personalized learning.” More importantly, these trends have also been fueled by the enormous marketing power of the largest corporations in the world including Google, Apple, Facebook, and Amazon, which see K-12 education as a multibillion dollar profit-making opportunity.

Why educators are concerned about edtech and how they can take action.

These educator blogs and op-eds offer insight into veteran teachers’ experience with and opinions of edtech.

How one teachers’ union in Massachusetts is challenging the ubiquity of edtech.

Resolutions passed by the Massachusetts Teachers Association Education Policy and Practice Committee at the union’s annual meeting in 2019.

A handout used by the Massachusetts Teachers Association urging educators to engage with screen time issues.

Further tools, presentations, and studies for educators to consult as they work with colleagues and school groups.

A model of healthy, research-backed edtech use created by Amy Tyson and Blythe Winslow of Everyschool.

Created by Dr. Richard Freed, author of Wired Child, this handout counters misconceptions about the value of screen use in classrooms.

Why smartphones and other tech in the classroom can be huge distractions. Adapted from Turning Life On.

Developed and used with great success by activist and work group member Katie Talarico, this handout cites recent studies on screen time concerns.

Important points and quotes on edtech summarized by Matt Miles and Joe Clement, authors of Screen Schooled.

These policy principles can be used to shape regulations and/or legislation within a school, a district, or a state.

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