doug — off the record

just a place to share some thoughts

10 Things to Fear

On Thursday, Colleen Rose asked this million dollar question on her blog.

What holds us back from embracing technology in our daily practice?

Now, I could have taken the easy route and posted a reply to her blog but instead, I collaborated with my buddy Peter McAsh to come up with this Top 10 list big list.

We seem to have mastered Dropbox Paper so that was our platform for this collaboration.

Note that we’re not afraid to bite firmly on our tongues…

This isn’t necessarily a definitive list and there’s no order but it’s what we came up with.

Your mileage may vary.

Do you see yourself or a previous self or a colleague in there somewhere?

Please add to the list via comment.

We’ll send the entire list to Colleen. After all, she started it.

  • The kids know more than I do
  • I dont have time; so many other things that are more important
  • How do I know that it fits the curriculum?
  • My school doesn’t have enough computers for every student to have their own
  • I need a workshop on this
  • Nothing worse than booking the lab, taking the entire class there, and then half the computers are broken
  • It’s not in the curriculum
  • Too much curriculum; not enough time to experiment
  • I’m not sure I have a login on the school network.  Who do I ask?
  • I have a Mac at home and the school has Windows
  • The IT Department has the computers locked down and I can’t run the software I need
  • What if the kids get into a porn site?
  • I can teach the topic better without technology
  • I’m a Google person trapped in a Microsoft world or vice versa
  • Our computers are too old and not powerful enough
  • I’m concerned about student privacy
  • I’m concerned about my own privacy
  • Somebody needs to be the champion of cursive
  • Nobody has ever hacked my filing cabinet
  • The printer never works I have to print their work so I can mark it
  • What if the technology isn’t charged and goes dead in class?
  • I tried once and failed badly.  Once burned, twice shy.
  • Phones are banned in my school
  • The bulb in my data projector is burned out and my principal won’t replace it
  • Nobody else does, why should I?
  • What do I do when something goes wrong?
  • I don’t want to show a weakness in my knowledge in front of the class
  • I’ve never had a Scratch workshop; maybe my school could hire somebody
  • What if a student puts 2 spaces after a period?
  • What if their essay or report includes emoji?
  • Many of the resources have US content. What about Canadian resources?
  • It’s the librarian’s job
  • How do I mark it?
  • If my board or school thought it was important, they would do workshops and train me
  • Two words Fake News

On the other hand, TeachThought and Sylvia Duckworth seems to think that it’s worthwhile.


And for blogging, …



3 responses to “10 Things to Fear”

  1. What a comprehensive list! Would be curious to know if anyone can think of something else to add to it. My follow-up question might be, how do we address these fears so that change happens? I see the value of technology use, but I will say that in the past couple of years, my learning about self-regulation and a closer look at the needs of my students, have forced me to look differently at HOW and WHEN I use technology (especially with our younger students). It’s not that it can’t be used well — it definitely can — but is it always best? Does this questioning about it, sometimes equate to fear? Maybe … It certainly does have me reconsider its use and often stop me from using it with kids.

    I will say that in the past five years, I have yet to see or work with a teacher that does not use technology at all. Maybe our Board’s focus and support of it helps with that. But I’m not sure that teaching and learning is consistently changing despite technology use. Could one of our fears of technology be, “how might it change teaching and how could it change learning?” I think these kinds of changes could make this a scary question.


    Liked by 1 person

  2. […] the original Colleen Rose’ post What Do Educators Fear About Using Technology?, and Doug posted 10 Things to Fear this morning. As I read through their list, I found myself mentally generating possible responses […]


  3. I would add overall ignorance amongst board decision-makers on the use and potential of technology and digital resources. Most upper management (superintendents, etc) developed as educators before computers were really in common use. Many of them do not have a strong understanding of technology and do not know how to implement technology on a board-wide basis. This is a problem as decision making is now so centralized. People making decisions on technology are generally not in the schools and do not necessarily have a good grasp of what teachers and students need.

    Liked by 1 person

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