'

They're tools, they're just tools!

I thought Chris Dawson's article Should kids go back to papyrus?  Hit the nail on the head.

I thought Chris Dawson's article Should kids go back to papyrus?  Hit the nail on the head.  Every transition to new technology has left some longing for that 'simpler time' when things moved more slowly and solutions were elegant and artful instead of being 'quick and dirty'.

For some, the use of a pen and paper, instead of a keyboard and a text editor, is a hindrance to the creative process. It certainly was for me, and I grew up in the 1950s/60s.  I was an IT professional working with IBM mainframes in the 1980s when I finally learned to 'write' -- using MultiMate on an original IBM PC!

Taking Chris Pasley's original premise (see Chris Pasley chimes in on pen-and-paper debate) "that the traditional 5 step writing process must be preserved", one can certainly agree with his point.

The problem, in my view, is that both educators and students sometimes become lazy and while the technology offers greater opportunity to do effective research, it also makes it easier for people lacking motivation to take unwelcome shortcuts.  Like any other double-edged sword, you have to take the bad with the good. 

What we are really talking about is a paradigm shift -- one that requires educators to find new ways of teaching old tricks to new students using 'new and improved' tools to captivate their audience.  It's not so hard, as long as educators are motivated to learn how to use the new tools.