As I look out my window this morning, I am struck by the beauty of the dazzling sunshine reflecting off of the multiple solar panels that cover our sunroom. The cozy warmth of the wood stove, coupled with the heat produced from newly installed panels, makes sitting and reading a divine experience. As I enjoy the warmth created by our “solar garden,” I have to laugh at myself. Once a person who shunned the computer in favor of paper and pen, I now enjoy the luxury of technological advancement from the comfort of my recliner. What changed?
In reflecting on the topic of technology and media, I am in a quandary. I love the energy of technology: instant information at my fingertips, connections around the world through a simple Facebook contact, or receiving a text from my daughter overseas in the middle of the night. And how efficient our communication has become! I remember when we first had our Apple II computer; I needed a cheat sheet to keep track of all the instructions, and I was convinced that I would continue to do any creative writing in my notebook. At the time, I felt that the computer was too formal, too institutional looking, and I liked the flow of the black pen on crisp, white, notebook paper. Needless to say, it wasn’t long before the efficiency of the computer won out. What teacher (here I’m dating myself, but not by many years) would ever want to go back to sitting up late at night carefully designing those ditto sheets for class the next day? Not me. My memories of writing report cards by hand are far from favorable: If I made an error, I’d have to fix it with white-out, blue-out, and yellow-out. Younger teachers may laugh at how primitive it all was—certainly, technology has made education more “cutting edge”—or has it?
The reality is that our world is swiftly changing, and in order to remain relevant as Christian educators, we must stay abreast of these changes.