Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Ontario Premier says "Allow Cell Phones in Class"

Chargepod is a 6-way charging device that allo...Image via WikipediaPremier Dalton McGuinty has come out saying school boards should be open to the idea of allowing students to use cellphones in the classroom...and I suspect most Ontarians will immediately consider this a bad idea.

This is the same reaction many US school districts and educators had when contemplating the notion, but you now have a surprising number of teachers advocating the use of cell phones. And some of it may be a result of the inevitabel, if you can't beat them join them, but nonetheless there are a number of articles, sites, and networks regularly exchanging ideas on how to integrate cellphones into classroom planing and learning activities.

Education Week, a leading education publication in the US, has regular articles and webinars on cell phones as classroom learning tools, quite often accompanied with real classroom / teacher examples of their use.

There are now text books on cell phone use in education, e.g. Toys to Tools: Connecting Student Cell Phones to Education, Teaching With the Tools Kids Really Use: Learning With Web and Mobile...just do an Amazon search and you'll be surprised.

Many progressive universities now have centres for the study of interactive technology in education, which include research into mobile technology and learning. And Classroom 2.0, the largest professional social network for teachers with over 30, 000 members, has a group called Cell Phones in Education.

It's definitely worthwhile at least exploring the option...