Johnathan Martin’s recent post on Connected Principals really got me thinking about the impact technology can have on relationships. Very often we hear people talk about how technology is harming relationships. Johnathan’s post referenced his experience listening to Salman Kahn, and he summarized Kahn’s message with the following phrases.
if we use technology effectively, we don’t diminish the interpersonal and relational qualities of education, we enhance it.
technology used well makes our learning spaces more human and humane, more interpersonal and relational, than they have been for the past two centuries.
As Johnathan went on to say, technology used appropriately can help embrace the “best of both worlds”. Students can and should still make face-to-face connections, but technology allows students to make those relationships even richer. It also allows students and educators to connect with others which wouldn’t be possible without technology.
Many educators, board members, and parents worry about teachers using technology to connect with students. Unfortunately, they don’t see the opportunities that technology can provide to enhance the relationships that teachers have with their students.
I believe that as educators one of our major jobs is to build relationships and get to know our students. If technology helps us do that, we need to embrace that!
The video below is Van Meter, IA students talking about how they have used technology to connect with others.