Get Ahead of the Technology Curve with BYOD

Guess what? BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) is coming to schools sooner than we think! Some schools are already enforcing BYOD as a way to save money and get students interacting and collaborating more in the classroom. Students are bringing in their cell phones, iPod Touches, iPads, laptops, etc.  Mobile devices are sweeping the nation and they will soon be sweeping the classrooms.  

The Technology Curve is something that will make or break our 21st century students in the workforce.   The way I see it, students are either behind the curve, on the curve, or ahead of the curve.  BYOD is coming! I don't know about you, but I want my students to be ahead of the curve when it does!

With great power comes great responsibility! We have to teach our students how to use these devices appropriately and effectively.  Digital citizenship should be modeled and taught in our classrooms so that students may learn how use the latest technology resources for education, under supervision and facilitation. 

In The "Bring Your Own Device" Debate One participant asked the group, “Can you imagine having this discussion about the pen? If we allow pens into classrooms, students will be distracted -- doodling, playing Tic-Tac-Toe.” He suggested that mobile devices are the pens of the 21st century.

I could not agree more with that participant. I bet at one time, parents, teachers, and administrators were all saying, "If we let students bring pens to school, they are going to be permanently writing and drawing inappropriate things on desks, on walls, in their books, etc. We can't trust kids to use this device, so it mustn't be allowed." What eventually happened? Students wrote and drew inappropriate things on desks, on walls and in their books. However, it is a very small percentage of students who do, and they learn to accept the consequences of their actions. Why is BYOD any different? Is it really fair to prohibit all students from using their pen or their smart device in school? Absolutely not! We can't be afraid of letting students make bad choices, because in reality, students ARE going to make bad choices. If we don't teach students to correct their mistakes and learn how to use technology appropriately, then who will?

This poem is exactly how I feel about technology in the classroom. Please feel free to post a comment, share on Twitter, or like on Facebook if you agree!

Don't teach your kids this stuff. Please?
By: Scott McLeod on August 26, 2009, 8:28 AM

dear parent
board member

don't teach your kids to read
for the Web
to scan

don't teach your kids to write
pen and paper aren't going anywhere
since when do kids need an audience?

no need to hyperlink
make videos

no connecting, now
no social networking
or online chat
or comments
or PLNs
blogs and twitter?
how self-absorbed

what a bunch of crap
and definitely, absolutely, resolutely, no cell phones
block it all
lock it down
keep it out

it's evil, you know
there's bad stuff out there
gotta keep your children safe

don't you know collaboration is just another word for cheating?
don't you know how much junk is out there?
haven't you ever heard of sexting?
of cyberbullying?

a computer 24-7? no thanks
I don't want them
you know they're just going to look at porn
and hook up with predators
we can't trust them

don't do any of it, please


'cause I'm doing all of it with my kids

can't wait to see who has a leg up in a decade or two

can you?


  1. Brad,
    Great post. Totally agree that BYOD usage needs to modeled in a safe, supportive environment. Not just for appropriate usage, but also to promote balance. I will soon be a fact of life that schools will began to modeling how to disconnect for the digital world. Schools will began to teach not only how to be good digital citizens, but how to lead a balanced digital life. When teaching elementary kids using the NetSmartz resources, the Numbutt character was the one they could most relate to. Many would describe how their parents would not disconnect for their devices...even at the dinner table. I would hope whatever BYOD or 1-to-1 programs come to our schools focus on the balance of usage. This will mostly likely be the hardest skill to model/teach our digital learners.


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