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Why Do You Ask?

From asking questions that require an answer To asking questions that require a conversation.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Google, The Educator's


Google never stands still. They are constantly developing (or marketing) in new ways.

They have recently made a public commitment to the Mac community; promising more help and features for Mac users.

They have announced two things just for educators...Google for Educators & The Literacy Project. This is in addition to something I am working on for The MC - Google's Custom Search tool (this limits the results to perameters we set). I wonder if this can appease the filter czar's sense of protection?

Both of these services (actually containing some of the same services) are aimed at getting the educational community to catch up with a flattening world. We are rapidly moving from a server-based delivery of services to a web-based delivery of services. What does this mean? For our school system, it could mean freeing up the IT department from work we don't need them to do anymore...manage servers for teacher files, student files, email, and several other server-based services. Will we do this? I doubt we adopt it anytime in the near future, because we have invested too much time and money in our current business model.

But, I see the use of something web-based inevitable for schools. I can already hear the objections about security, safety, and all the meme that accompanies this kind of discussion. We have to catch up with the world, and realize that if we do not teach our students how to use these tools (appropriately, safely, and beneficially) students will still be using them (just without adult supervision and guidance). It is time for education to replace fear in our schools' business model of teaching technology use to our students. After all, we are a teaching profession.

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