Technology Dinosaurs I Wish Were Extinct

by Jean Tower

I’ve been making a little headway through the professional journals I subscribe to (which usually pile up without mercy and threaten to take over my “reading bin”) because I’m in the middle of a series of dental appointments and bring my reading with me.  John Breeden II wrote “7 tech dinosaurs: Which would you kill?” (October 1, 2011 issue of Government Computer News). I love his list and am also ready to say a final goodbye to Fax machines, disk drives, CRT monitors, non-smart phones, and paper. I admit I am not there yet on desktop PCs and email. In looking up the link for the online version of this article, I see he upped it to 8 and added humans – a little nod to humor.

  1. Fax machines
  2. disk drives
  3. CRT monitors
  4. non-smart phones
  5. paper
  6. desktop PCs
  7. email

So, what would you add to the list? What are your tech dinosaurs you’d like to see go extinct?
I started thinking about this in terms of the school environment.

  • Palm Pilots (really – some educators still have them)
  • Hand-written emergency cards that are sent home blank every year
  • Three-ring binders of Strategic Plans, Curriculum Guides, and policies, all getting dusty on a shelf
  • Server home directories for students (on local school servers)
  • Typewriters
  • Forms that require typing
  • Software that works only when a dongle is connected to the computer (argh)
  • Overhead projectors

As I thought about my dinosaur list, I (of course) started thinking about non-technology dinosaurs we still have in education.

  • 180-day school year
  • Bell schedules
  • Promotion based seat time
  • Placement based on age
  • Worksheets
  • Coloring in maps
  • Homework assignments written on the board in the front of the room
  • Scheduling parent – teacher conferences by the secretary in the office on a paper grid

Before I get carried away, I’ve got to stop. Don’t want to get riled up over dinosaurs, but really, can we “extinct” these out of our practice?

What are your education dinosaurs?

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