Tony Gurr

I do luv “me TECH”…BUT…!

In Classroom Teaching, Technology, Uncategorized on 18/09/2012 at 1:04 pm

I do…those of you that know me (in the “real” and digi-worlds both) know this, too.

…I mean what is there not to luv?

…except that dogs are not quite there, yet! Sorry. Dexter…


I mean…all that great hardware, all that great software, all that great webware…that allows me to do so much “social LEARNing” (my wife tells me it’s quite “anti-social”…what does she know…she doesn’t even have a Facebook account)!

OK, OK…I know that I have said (in the past) that I hate the phrase:

…and, always maintain that:

…but there is so much “stuff” to LEARN out there!


The thing is…I’m an “education-guy” (and a bit of a Star Wars fan)…and do, from time to time, thunk is terms of alternativesabsolutes (I’m human, too).

Absolutes like…

Heck…if I was really honest (not that I am NOT usually honest…) I do not really like the phrase 21C LEARNingat all!


I guess, in my heart-of-hearts, I have always believed:




…in EDUcation!


This is probably because – again, in my heart of hearts, I recognise…and believe:


Like most sensible TEACHers, I know:

…and, that it is the QUESTIONS we ask in the classroom…that make the difference – in addition to how often we hang this sign outside our door:

…and, no, I do not care what “discipline” we all work within…

I do not like going to conferences packed full with digital cheerleaderscheerleaders that “beat up” on TEACHers for not using the latest “app”…or, worse to my mind, decide to read a blog and tell the world that this

…is what a 21C TEACHer “looks like”!

Nor do I enjoy people going on…and onand on…about TECHnology replacing TEACHers.

…but, then again, I get that it may be easier to “replace” some TEACHers than others…if we do not wake up and smell the ink from the 3D printer (and Guy Claxton’s books)!

Yes, the hardware…the software…the webware are HERE – we gotta get used to them…we gotta get using them (do you really want to see a doctor that is not using an iPad- these days)!


I think the problem isand the Sith inside me is talking again…a lot of the time it’s about the questions we choose to ask:


…asking the “wrong” questions (more often than not) leads to the “wrong” decisions – and many of the challenges we face in EDUcation. For example, not asking the right questions can lead to problems with the “balance” of LEARNing and TEACHing we do:


…without even getting to TECHnology!


After allnot all TEACHers are created “equally”:


TECHnology can (and does)…complicate these things:


You see…it’s those bloody “questions” again:


Maybe, just maybe…if we did some:


…and asked some other questions (not just about “NEW” stuff) – questions like:


Then, maybe…just maybe…we might start to get some:


…to go with our:


…for our:


NOW…I am really starting to “hate” that “21C” phrase…


  1. I like this a lot, Tony. I think the key is always to think about why you are using technology. Is it better than it would have been without tech? Are you spending time using the tech that could have been better utilized in the teaching and learning process? This issue is going to be a big theme of my blog over the coming year, with a reasonably heavy focus on the TPaCK model (

    • Adam Hocam,

      Why thank you, sir 😉 Love those questions, too 😉 I’ll keep me eye out for the posts – looks like they will be fun 😉

      Take care,


  2. Another feat of wordsmith-ery while juggling visual metaphors – beautifully apt and engaging argument, Tony.
    What to do to replace the cant?
    Like you, I struggle with hackneyed phrases “21st century” is too self-conscious and, if a teacher can be replaced with technology – go to it, I say! More difficult to replace artistry of learning (as you insinuate with relationships and culture; love that shadow-play pic, by the way. Where can I pin a copy?).
    Provoke me with questions, and I shall think upon it; answers are what we make with students in classrooms while learning together.
    Hat’s off

    • Thx Sam – yes, that was one “rant” I really had fun with 😉

      Actually, I did this as prep for a conference I was doing in İstanbul this week – we are not alone! There are many EDUcators out there that thunk just like us – now, if we can just get our voices heard (above the marketing and the hype), our questions considered…the TECH can start to really help us 😉

      Be good 😉


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