Innovation Hub

Swapping Blackboards for iPads: Tech in the Classroom

By Kara Miller

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A student uses an iPad in school. (Flickeringbrad via Flickr)

As children spend more and more time hunched over screens, punching out text messages, playing online games, and updating their Facebook pages, we ask: is a tech takeover of the classroom inevitable?

Increasingly, schools are outfitting themselves with new and better equipment. More laptops. More tablets, More educational video games.

But not every school.

Last fall, the New York Times reported from Los Altos, Calif.:

The chief technology officer of eBay sends his children to a nine-classroom school here. So do employees of Silicon Valley giants like Google, Apple, Yahoo and Hewlett-Packard.

But the school’s chief teaching tools are anything but high-tech: pens and paper, knitting needles and, occasionally, mud. Not a computer to be found. No screens at all. They are not allowed in the classroom, and the school even frowns on their use at home.

So, what’s going on here? If technology enhances learning, why are technology titans taking away tech from their own kids? We delve into that question today.



About Innovation Hub

Each week, Kara Miller talks to Boston's most innovative thinkers, examining new ideas and potential solutions to today’s many challenges. Topics range from education to health care to green energy. Join us on Saturdays at 7 a.m. and Sundays at 10 p.m.

About the Host
Kara Miller Kara Miller
As a radio host, Kara Miller has interviewed thinkers from E.J. Dionne to Howard Gardner, Deepak Chopra to Lani Guinier. She is a panelist on WGBH-TV's "Beat the Press," as well as an Assistant Professor at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. Her writing has appeared in The Boston Globe, The National Journal, The Boston Herald, Boston Magazine, and The International Herald Tribune.

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