Less Technology in the Classroom

Lots of credible evidence here to justify staying off the bandwagon: “iPads for all the students!”

The was written prior to the pandemic. Note that MIT has long been publishing tons of actual course material online, but only while also rigorously avoiding any notion of credit or online classrooms.

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I’m totally with you here. Computers move information around more quickly… that’s about it. They don’t help you think, and thinking and learning is the real deal.

As a personal anecdote, I have found that I have to begin with a piece of paper and pen if I’m ever sitting down to write something long. Once I’ve done most of the thinking, I can then sit in front of the computer and type it out. If I start in front of the computer I waste time instead.


Yes, technology use in schools is a seriously disturbing trend. I’ve read article after article explaining that no studies show it to be helpful, and frequently it is shown to be harmful. This article is excellent at laying out many reasons and then attempting to think through how it might be used more appropriately. At our school at Trinity, even when I think it might be helpful, I tend towards remembering these studies and try to avoid it. I have also found it fascinating that even where one would assume it would be helpful, in a college classroom (note-taking), it is anything but. In fact, I have a friend who is a college professor and he does not allow computers in his classroom at all anymore. Fascinating subject that needs more thought and discussion.


I wholeheartedly concur . As a college freshman who just purchased my first laptop, I was all gung-ho to use it where ever I could in my classes. I used it to take notes in my first semester or so, but quickly found that my studying and note-taking were not as effective as I was used to. I gradually went back to pen and paper for note-taking and my problems with studying were solved.


And moving information quickly can actually hinder thinking. My oldest just finished 4th grade and I don’t think he has ever used a computer at school (a private Christian school.) He is behind me! 30 years ago. Our headmaster is pretty staunchly opposed to “technology” in the class room and even screen use at home.

A similar personal anecdote to yours: While I was in residency, all medical note-writing in the hospital was by hand, until about 3 months before I finished. They “crossed over” into electronic notes. The writing process was when I did most of my thinking. It definitely made me a worse doctor overnight. It took time to improve. I work in a clinic now with generally fewer moving parts and patients who aren’t as sick. So its not as big of a deal. But I still miss writing.


Back half a century, Dad wrote everything on a long legal pad with a fountain pen—and always blue ink. Two pens, one carried in pocket and one on his desk. Take a guess what those two pens were?

Anyhow, when it came time to do books, he typed with only two fingers, cutting and scotch-taping together sentences and paragraphs needing to move somewhere else in manuscript. My brother still does his sermons on a legal pad. Love,


I’m going to guess they were $200 fountain pens, purchased in the seminary bookstore.



Too low and too high. Lamy Safari and Mont Blanc Meisterstück. Guess you know which one wasn’t carried. Although I’ve always wanted the Mont Blanc, I’ve owned about forty Safaris and they’re excellent cheap pens.