Teacher at Palo Alto High School and Vice Chair of the Creative Commons Board of Directors
Con to the question "Should Tablets Replace Textbooks in K-12 Schools?"
"Students hold strong and passionate opinions about e-textbooks... While a majority dislikes e-textbooks, about 20 percent believe that they are the future - and should be. Perhaps I should have predicted such a reaction given that early in the school year many of these students had written a fiery editorial about e-textbooks in their social studies classes. In part it read, '… online textbooks hinder study habits and force the use of computers. … and are detrimental to learning and inconvenient.' The editorial concluded with these words: 'If the school wishes to cultivate the use of e-books, it should at the very least offer students the option to continue using the old, hardcover books.' At one point, we did a straw poll with the option of a free Kindle with all their books loaded on it or their old textbooks. The result: 100 percent voted for their heavy, old textbooks...
Students were adamant that it was 'much easier to learn' from a textbook. (Several students did say that they don’t like carrying heavy books.) With hardcover books, they told me, they can highlight sections and flip through and scan pages more easily; reviewing the highlighted pages helps them remember facts. Portability also was an important factor: With a textbook they could study in random places like at after-school games or practices or they could take it with them to a friend’s house, and no one would ever want to steal it, unlike a Kindle. They said that digital devices in general were hard on the eyes, hard to read outdoors, required dealing with a battery, and are fragile... [S]tudents really find it easier to learn from a textbook..."
"E-Textbooks to iPads: Do Teenagers Use Them?," nieman.harvard.edu, Summer 2010
Experts Individuals with PhDs in education-related fields, heads of government, members of federal legislative bodies, heads of education or technology-related federal executive bodies, heads of national education or education technology organizations, and individuals with graduate degrees and significant post-graduate involvement in fields relevant to the study of education or education technology. [Note: Experts definition varies by site.]
Involvement and Affiliations:
Vice Chair, Board of Directors, Creative Commons, 2008-present
Board Certified Teacher, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, 2000-present
Journalism and English Teacher, Palo Alto High School, 1984-present
Educational Consultant, Google Teacher Outreach and Google Teacher Academy, 2005-2006
Blogger, Huffington Post and HotChalk
Member, Board of Trustees, Developmental Studies Center
Member, Board of Governors, Alliance for Excellent Education
Chairman of the Board, Learning Matters
President, Friends of the Lurdes Mutola Foundation
Consultant, Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
Consultant, Hewlett Foundation
Member, Advisory Board, University of the People
Former Member, University of California Office of the President Curriculum Committee
MA, Educational Technology, San Jose State University
MA, Journalism, University of California at Berkeley
BA, English and Political Science, University of California at Berkeley