10 Reasons Technology Will Never Replace Teachers
There can be little doubt about the fact that technology now has a huge role in education. This has been a major transformation and has required a fundamental shift by stakeholders. In short, whether people like it or not, the critical role of technology in the realm of education is here to stay. Considering the immense thirst for instant information and the technology driven direction of society, it is critical that schools and districts keep current. In many instances this means altering or adapting methodologies in order to best utilize technology as a tool to enhance and support learning. Indeed, adding technology to our ever increasing arsenal of tools to bolster teaching and learning is a win-win for everyone. Nevertheless, I have been hearing a lot of discussion lately which claims technology will eventually replace teachers altogether. I find this view to be quite simplistic and it entirely misses the point in regards to what teachers actually do. Below I have listed 10 top reasons why technology will never replace teachers.
1. Relationship Building: Teachers will take a genuine interest in their students and make the time to learn about their lives and interests. This teacher/learner bond is critical.
2. Teaching to Various Learning Styles and Preferences: Everyone learns differently…that is a fact. Whether it be visual, auditory or tactile, teachers will differentiate instruction to meet the various needs of their students.
3. Kind and Empathetic: Great teachers are naturally kind and empathetic to their students. It allows the students to know that there is someone else that cares about them and will help them and lend an empathetic ear.
4. Extra-Curricular Activities: Teachers spend countless hours planning and running various clubs and teams that match the needs of their students. Part of the overall experience in school is the many clubs and teams which students are able to participate in. The kids will remember these many years down the line with great fondness. Technology simply cannot provide this.
5. Teachers are Mentors and Role Models: A teacher acts as a mentor and role model every second of every day. That is a huge part of who they are and what they do. Students often learn simply by observing their teachers. It is a role the vast majority of educators do not take lightly!
6. Flexibility: A huge part of teaching is the ability to be flexible. Teachers will often do whatever it takes to get their students to where they need to be. While teachers will certainly create long-range plans…these are flexible based upon the needs of their students. Teachers are always aware of when something needs to be covered in more depth, and are keenly interested in ”teachable moments.” It is not a matter of programming something in and ticking it off as it is completed.
7. Social Emotional Learning: Teaching and learning is a very social activity. It requires a lot of interaction between teachers and students and collaboration is crucial. Also, the importance of social emotional learning continues to grow, and requires social, empathetic and genuine teachers to hep our students with social/emotional concerns. Academic growth cannot be fostered if the child is in social and emotional turmoil.
8. Advocacy: Teachers are frequently the greatest advocates for their students. I see this each and every single day. I have seen the results such genuine advocacy can have on students numerous times.
9. Passion for Learning: Never underestimate the importance and influence a genuine passion for learning can have on our students. Teachers often have such passion and this sheer energy and devotion leads to a level of devotion which is entirely unique.
10. Leadership: Great teachers will inspire students to assume leadership roles and tackle things they never even dreamed of. That is what teachers do…they recognize potential and push students to achieve success and maximize their own growth as they aim for excellence.
There you have it, 10 top reasons I believe technology will never replace teachers. As I hear about the many advantages of replacing teachers with technology, such as the reduction of salaries and huge elimination in the number of actual schools, I believe people are totally missing the point. In truth, technology is extremely important for education. However, I contend it is vital as a tool to assist the teachers and educators…not to replace them. I also think that any teacher or educator who does not utilize technology runs the risk of making their practice irrelevant and virtually obsolete. Once again in education we need to stop looking too far in one direction or the other…and meet in the middle!
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