Environment, technology and making a difference

I really want an ipod, well an mp3 player. I have been thinking about it for a year or so now. The last time I really thought about it I decided that the cd players and tape players that mostly sit dormant in the t.v. unit were probably still sufficient to the task. I try to pass of my ‘need’ for this piece of technology as a necessary part of my professional development. How can I know the potential of a tool that I do not use myself? Yet deep down, I’m pretty sure I don’t need one today, any more than I did yesterday.

I have a personal fight going on between the ‘need generating maching’ we call public relations and advertising and my own conscience. I have three computers, the old one, the newer desktop and the newest laptop. I’ve had the opportunity to become reacquainted with Macs this year and I regret buying my laptop PC. I really like the Macs. My civil libritarian wants to use Linux. I don’t think I know enough to go that route, so I’m stuck in the slavery of pc or mac machinges and applications. And truth be told, the machines I have now will do.  I need not ‘need’ a different one.

I want to make a difference, that is why I teach, perhaps that is why any teacher teaches. I’m wondering how I bring together these disparate forces. I’m excited by the possibilities for real learning that technology may afford. I believe that bringing these technologies into the classroom is one of the ways to ensure that students without at home access have a chance to break into the power circle which already has access. But does using technology with its endless ‘need’ for upgrading and improvement really contribute to the kind of society that I wish to see in the world. Will I be “living the change I want to see in the world” (Ghandi)?

I am thinking about these dichotomies a la Clarence Fisher; technology or literacy, environment or technology. I keep thinking that the answers are really somehow – both/and rather than either/or.

We’ll see. I’d still like an ipod.

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Filed under environment, responsibility, social justice

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