I was in the zone. Level 3, addition, 23 seconds on the clock. It was
another intense game of mathletics –firing through the questions,
smashing Craig T, age 6, Craigieburn Primary School. As I was
whipping through the answers, I got to 9+10, and it got me thinking.
Would my tireless, carefully, scheduled Mathletics study sessions,
earn me a pass in my Methods exam.
The assumption that the use of technology is fundamental for
excellence in academia is a lie. Despite being the primary leader in
the world for technology in schools, Australia does not compare
with our global counterparts in terms of results. Furthermore, our
reliance on gadgets hinder our ability to comprehend information
and have staggering long term implications on our ability to learn.
Not to mention, the destructive impact it is having on social skills
We must move away from the idea that frequent use of
technology is a necessary element ineducation.
for Economic Cooperation and Development) a forum made up of
a collection of the world’s most developed countries, released a
report stating that based on tests undertaken in 70 of these
different countries, those that had heavily invested into technology,
in the areas of reading, mathematics and science have seen “no
noticeable improvement” in performance.
Australia is a country, that thanks to the Rudd, Gillard, Rudd,
governments, has invested a whopping 2.4 billion dollars, ensuring
that as many children as possible have a laptop in their school bag.
For every 1000 computers, there are 900 Australian students. We
have been programmed to believe that our computers are the be all
and end all of our educational lives. Ironically, despite an abundance
of these technological gadgets in our schools, Australia is ranked
well behind Singapore, who with very moderate levels of
technological use in education still beat us in terms of digital skills.
Let’s have a look at one of the highest-achieving countries in the
world. You guessed it, Finland. Where there are 1000 Finnish
computers to 5000 Finnish students, even with this ratio they
academically put us to shame. The truth is, that they don’t even
need to be in the Mathletics hall of fame, to outperform us.
The distraction that technology provides can have a negative
impact on one’s learning capacity. From the moment we log into
our computers, we’re taking in and sifting through an incredible
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Suzanne Northey Public