Monday, April 18, 2011

Choice and Edutainment

Pardon the long excerpt from this article...
In today’s digital marketplace, students of all ages can create experiences tailored just for them. When a teenager searches for movies to watch, an online film site can provide suggestions based on past viewing history. Music lovers can create personalized playlists for everything from a workout in the gym to a study session. And when children play video games, they can choose a variety paths—based on their interests and skill levels—toward slaying a dragon or defeating an enemy.

Then many of these same students walk into their classrooms and sit at their desks to absorb one-size-fits-all lessons or, if they’re lucky, instruction aimed at the high-, mid-, or low-level learner. And in many cases, there is little, if any, technology integrated into those lessons.

In some pockets around the country, though, educators and schools are turning to technology and different teaching and learning approaches to give students a personalized learning experience that mirrors the customized experiences they take for granted....

I'm anxious over the sound of this, for it could too easily become education as entertainment. If we start letting students take for granted that they get education experience customized to them, then don't we invoke a risk that if they don't like the experience, they can reject skipping ahead on their iPod?

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