A Word from EdTech Cos


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Dennis Kambeitz “If we want our students to experience deep learning and understanding, it’s important that we provide education in a way that is meaningful and contextual to their lives,” said Dennis Kambeitz, Education Liaison with EZ-Robot, “Phenomenon like Pokemon Go give educators the opportunity to reach students at their inspiration point.” Dennis Kambeitz | CEO | STEM Learning Lab

I must admit that the Pokemon Go craze has totally passed me Alan Katzmanby. Other than hearing about a person who walked off a cliff while playing, I really do not know much about it at all. What I do know and fervently believe is that if the technology behind Pokemon Go presents a viable path towards integrating popular digital tools into an educator’s toolkit then I am all for it. We must teach our youth that global networking platforms are tools and not toys. Viewed very much as knowledge banks, we use these networks to make deposits and withdrawals on a daily basis. The very same platforms that our students play on every day are actually vast libraries of knowledge and global rolodexes holding the keys to open many doors of opportunity. If we fail to teach our youth about the higher calling of these social platforms, we are doing them a great disservice.  Alan Katzman |  Founder | Social Assurity LLC

 Don MillerPokemon Go has created excitement and intrigue among people of all ages, but especially our youth.  Perhaps as educators we should take a closer look at the design of the game.  Is it the idea of gamification, is the social interaction, is it a blend of technology and nature.  What has our children so enamored?  Next we should see if the phenomenon that is Pokemon Go, that got us all up and moving over the summer can be replicated in our schools and classrooms.  If you look back to when Pokemon Go first launched, you won’t find any directions or instructions, but what you did see was children willing to figure it out.  It is this type of curiosity, grit, determination and perseverance that we need to instill in our students today.  It starts with experiencing it for yourself and if you have kids, then do it with them, see the joy and excitement that comes from walking around in nature and catching these little characters that many of them remember from their childhood.  After all, the first step in teaching is learning and only then can you truly understand the magic of Pokemon Go.  I have done it with my children and it has captivated us all.  Enjoy! Don Miller | Vice President of Education Innovation | GoEnnounce

Tom McDonaldAlthough I have not engaged Pokemon directly, I have seen the frenzy of activity specific to this ‘phenomenon’.

My concerns are direct and specific to Pokemon’s, parallel, documented, advances, in measured, deep learning ,research supported, strategic, individual student success outcomes, that result in advances in measured, deep learning, research supported, strategic, individual student, performance improvement outcomes.

Unless this frenzy has been research proven to strategically advance the above, it has all the elements to be an un-necessary, unneeded distraction, to what really needs to be done to advance student success outcomes.

We should have learned, by now, that blindly following a trend that has no documented research, specific to 21st century, deep, adaptive learning outcomes, has been unproductive and costly (for example: one size fits all learning, delivered over simple technology: whiteboards, elearning; tablets – none of which have advanced student success outcomes)

Blindly integrating another ‘hot’ item into the educational mix, that has not been specifically and measurably documented to be educationally innovative and market proven to advance individual student, deep, adaptive 21st century learning outcomes, is another sprint down the wrong path, with serious student success opportunity costs.

All the credible research suggests, research based, classroom proven, professionally facilitated, educationally innovative software, that seamlessly integrates relevant pedagogy, in a blended and flipped learning environment.

No where do I see any measured validation that this application is strategically aligned to advancing defined, relevant, student success outcomes, any documentation of integrated, research validated pedagogy, nor any mention of documented, 21st century, strategic student success outcomes.

As usual with these kinds of things, they are a real distraction and divert our attention from the things that are research and classroom proven to make a difference in advancing student success outcomes.

Until this has been directly aligned with a strategic, 21st century learning, educational organizational objective and  beta test proven to measurably advance, sustained,  21st century deep, adaptive, individual student learning objectives, I am highly skeptical that this is the right strategic focus of scarce educational resources.Tom McDonald | Managing Director | McDonald Sales and Marketing, LLC

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