Educational visionary and futurist Marc Prensky provides readers with suggestions on using cell phones in education. Yup, cell phones. Here's one idea from his blog: "A picture contest to take the best (funniest) picture of a student, a teacher, something representing the school, with student judges and strict guidelines. Or the most educational picture. Or the best educational use of phone cameras (such as time lapse photography of a flower opening.)"
He also writes in an article from the ASCD that"In Europe, China, Japan, and the Philippines, the public is already using mobile phones as learning tools. We in the United States need to join them and overcome objections that students are “using them for cheating” (so make the tests open book!) or for “inappropriate picture taking” (so instill some responsibility!). In the United Kingdom, teachers are evaluating student projects over mobile phones. The student describes the project, and the teacher analyzes the student's voiceprint for authentication." (Marc Prensky from his article Listen To The Natives)
Educators really have their work cut out. Especially when they're constantly being compared to their overseas colleagues. And in all honesty, I can't picture the cell phone lesson plan winning over many takers. Does that put me behind in vision? I hope not. Geee, it's hard enough getting students to focus on NOT using their phones during the school day. But I'm open. If your school is successful at using cell phones as a teaching tool, please feel free to share the story.
Also, Marc Prensky has a new paperback out, Don't Bother Me Mom–I'm Learning! : How Computer and Video Games Are Preparing Your Kids For 21st Century Success — and How You Can Help!