It is frikkin’ 2012.
12 years into the new century. Yet, there are STILL educators out there that just don’t get the whole “ed tech” thing.
I was reminded of this when I was reading someone’s blog ( I forgot who sorry) and that person took a picture of his professor trying desperately to hook up a VGA connector to his laptop. The Prof had absolutely no idea how to hook the laptop to the projector. There was no malfunction. Nothing was missing. There was nothing going on other than the professor being clueless. Instead of offering to help, the blogger blogged about how by now, this guy should have the skill set and he wasn’t going to help him. Harsh. Especially since he posted the picture of the guy messing up big time for the entire world to see.
Update: Here is the original from World Shaker: Can you see he is using his laptop screen UNDER the document camera?
The gist of the blog entry was something like: It’s is 2012! Why don’t you know how to do something like this?
At what point do we say “You know, by this point in our digital education evolution, you should have a clue about the basics of educational technology.” Yet, every single year, we continue to make excuses for those that simply have refused to gain the basic knowledge set of digital citizenship and skills. (Time, culture, upbringing, didn’t have it in college, don’t use it, I forgot, I was not breastfed as a child..the list goes on and on.)
That then got me thinking about what we as educators put up with our fellow educators. There comes a time when we should say enough is enough. If you don’t have this skill set by now, then go sell real estate. You aren;t helping the kids any, no matter what your damned test scores are.
I say, we start a movement! We finally stand up and say, “You know what: that is your problem. You have been living under a rock and if you don’t know about this by now, you are not highly qualified to do anything. You have a year to learn, or you are fired.”
Here is a list of, what I will call “Intolerables” those things that you as an educator -citizen of the digital world should know by now:
- Basic operations of a computer. If you can’t find the on button, or figure out how to plug in the power supply, or which way the mouse should point, then give it back, go back to using your slate and chisel Wilma Flintstone.
- Basic Word Processing: Really, this is just like the typing class you took back in 1895. Get over it. Figure out how to save the document on your own, and while you are at it (thanks for pointing out the grammatical error) at it, get that bottle of White Out away from the screen grandma.
- Basic Internet Surfing: If you can figure out how to make your cable TV and your cell phone work, then dammit you can figure out how to use Google.
- Behaving like an adult on the internet. If you figured out #3, then act like you are older than a 12 year old. We don’t need to see you duck-lip cell phone photo. Really. We don’t. No one does. That is sexy only to you and a perv that lives in his mama’s basement in West Virginia.
- Asking everyone around you to do things for you. If you don’t know how to add paper to the printer, then learn to dammit! Can’t find a wireless connection? Learn how to do that!
- You should have internet access at your house. Really. You should. I don’t care how much it is. You pay for your cable, whats the difference? Don’t tell me you are uninformed about stuff that has to do with your job. Get connected.
- Using a phrase similar to “I am not a techie” as an excuse for not doing anything technical. You know what? Your students need to have a “techie” teacher. It is like saying “I am not very good at math” if you are a math teacher. Tell me you aren’t very technical is giving me permission to slap you and fire you.
- If you haven’t figured out how to send and receive email by now, just quit. Really. Quit. Join a monastery. But don’t join one that uses email.
- Refusing to become part of a PLN: If you are not digitally connected to other educators by now, you are committing educational malpractice.
- Avoiding training because it requires you to use a computer. Grow up. Really.
As you might be able to tell, it has become a bone of contention with me that there are so many teachers and administrators out there that still are trying to plug their laptops into the projectors like the professor at the beginning of this blog.
We have zero tolerance for everything else in education, shouldn’t we have zero tolerance for educators that are not digitally savvy?