Author Archives: Allysia Doratti

Navigating the Future: Integrating Cutting-Edge Technology in Today’s Classroom

Summary of Learning

Today, I am excited to share my learning journey in the EC&I 830 course. This course has been a transformative experience, allowing me to delve even deeper into the intersection of technology and education. Through various debates, assessments, and reflections, I have gained valuable insights I am eager to share.

View my Summary of Learning here:

Engagement with Technology in Education

Throughout the course, we critically examined the role of technology in education and its impact on the classroom environment. One significant theme was the digital divide and its impact on equitable access to educational resources. Reflecting on the blog post titled Bridging the Digital Divide: Reflections on an Equitable Technology Debate, I realized the importance of addressing not just the availability of devices but also reliable internet access and digital literacy training. In my classroom, I plan to advocate for programs that provide devices to students who lack them and to work closely with community organizations to ensure students can access reliable internet. Additionally, incorporating digital literacy into the curriculum will help students navigate and utilize technology effectively and responsibly.

A crucial aspect of engaging with technology in the classroom is ensuring that students have access to the tools and understand how to use them properly. As a teacher, I must teach the proper use and full potential of each educational technology I integrate into my lessons. This includes providing clear instructions, offering hands-on training sessions, and continuously supporting students as they become proficient users of these technologies. By doing so, I can help students maximize the benefits of educational technology and enhance their learning experiences.

The debates on the impact of technology in the classroom were particularly enlightening. Drawing insights from The Great Debate on Technology in the Classroom, it became clear that while technology can enhance learning, it requires careful planning and professional development for effective integration. For example, interactive whiteboards and educational apps can make lessons more engaging and interactive. However, technology should support pedagogical goals rather than distract or disengage students. Therefore, I plan to integrate technology to complement my teaching objectives, such as using digital tools for collaborative projects, simulations, and virtual field trips that enhance the curriculum content.

Artificial Intelligence and Ethical Considerations

Another crucial topic was the integration of artificial intelligence in education. In the blog post AI in Education: Revolutionizing Learning or Risking the Future?, I explored the potential of AI to personalize learning and automate tasks. AI-driven tools can provide personalized learning experiences by adapting to individual student needs and offering real-time feedback, significantly enhancing learning outcomes. For example, I can tailor lessons to fit each student’s pace and learning style using AI-powered platforms like adaptive learning software. However, this potential comes with ethical concerns, such as data privacy, the risk of algorithmic bias, and the need for transparency in AI decision-making processes.

To address these, I will ensure that any AI tools used in my classroom comply with privacy laws and ethical standards, and I will educate my students about the implications of AI in their learning. Additionally, I will emphasize that AI is meant to be used as a tool to guide learning, not as a shortcut to avoid learning. Teaching my students to use these tools properly will help set them on an ethical path, ensuring they understand the importance of using technology responsibly and effectively to enhance their educational journey.

Cell Phones in Education

The impact of cell phones in the classroom was another significant area of exploration. In the blog post The Impact of Cell Phones in the Classroom, I reflected on how cell phones can be both a valuable educational tool and a source of distraction. The key takeaway was the importance of developing clear policies and strategies to manage cell phone use, ensuring they contribute positively to the learning environment. For instance, implementing a ‘bring your own device’ (BYOD) policy can allow students to use their phones for educational purposes such as research, collaboration on group projects, and accessing digital textbooks. However, setting boundaries and establishing guidelines to minimize distractions is crucial, such as designating specific times for cell phone use and encouraging responsible digital citizenship.

I am against banning phones in classrooms because they can offer significant educational benefits. However, I understand that each teacher and their classroom management techniques are responsible for cellphone usage. It is up to teachers to create an environment where cell phones are used productively and where students are taught to use them responsibly.

Overall Reflections

Reflecting on the entire EC&I 830 course, I noted how the course challenged us to think critically about the role of technology in education. It pushed us to consider ethical implications, equity issues, and the long-term impact of our technological choices. The debates and assessments fostered a deeper understanding of the benefits and challenges of integrating technology into our teaching practices. For instance, the debate on the digital divide highlighted the disparities in access. It motivated me to seek innovative solutions, such as partnering with local businesses to provide resources and creating after-school programs focused on digital skills.

It is essential to continue learning about the depths of educational technology and the surrounding context to stay updated with the ever-evolving digital world. This ongoing learning will better equip me to support my students and adapt to new challenges and opportunities.


In conclusion, the EC&I 830 course has been an eye-opener, providing me with valuable insights into the complexities of technology in education. It has equipped me with the knowledge and skills to navigate the digital landscape thoughtfully and responsibly. My biggest takeaway has been the realization that technology, when used thoughtfully and ethically, has the power to transform education and bridge gaps. As I move forward, I am committed to advocating for equitable access to technology, critically assessing new tools, and ensuring that our use of technology always aligns with our educational goals and values. This journey has deepened my understanding and reinforced my commitment to being a reflective and adaptive educator who leverages technology to enhance learning while addressing its challenges head-on.

Thank you for listening. I look forward to continuing this journey of learning and growth with you.

“Keep pushing the limits when it comes to learning more about technology in the classroom. Start the conversations and keep them going. Challenge others’ perspectives and allow them to challenge yours. This is the work that matters for navigating the digital world.” – Ally

The Impact of Cell Phones in the Classroom

Strong arguments exist on both sides of the ongoing debate about the role of cell phones in the classroom. The discussion is crucial as it touches on significant aspects of student learning, mental health, classroom management, and technology integration in education. Here’s a reflection on the key points presented by proponents and opponents of allowing cell phones in schools.

Agree: Cell Phones as a Distraction

Cognitive Load and Physical Separation

One of the most compelling arguments against cell phones in the classroom is their significant impact on students’ cognitive load. A 2017 study demonstrated that even when phones were not in use and notifications were turned off, their mere presence was enough to occupy mental space. This finding suggests that the automatic attention drawn by phones can impede learning, making physical separation crucial for optimal academic performance.

Notification Overload

An experiment conducted by a middle school teacher with her grade six students revealed startling results. Over a period of 40 minutes, 30 students received 662 notifications, averaging 22 notifications per student. This constant barrage of alerts led to increased arousal levels, longer learning times, and significant challenges in covering the curriculum. Moreover, the mental health implications of such frequent disruptions cannot be overlooked, as the constant alerts can cause stress and anxiety among students.

Classroom Distractions

High-school teachers often struggle with the challenge of cell phone use in the classroom. Despite district-wide prohibitions, enforcement tends to be lax, leading to continuous distractions. In response, some districts have adopted non-locking pouches to store phones during class time, a practice gaining national traction. This approach aims to balance the need for focus with the reality of cell phone presence, potentially reducing distractions and improving student engagement.

Disagree: Cell Phones as Educational Tools

Emergency Communication and Professional Use

On the other side of the debate, there are strong arguments for allowing cell phones in the classroom, primarily for their role in emergency communication. Teachers need immediate access to their phones to handle emergencies, communicate with authorities or parents, and manage urgent situations effectively. By using cell phones responsibly, teachers can model appropriate usage for students, demonstrating how to balance technology with professionalism.

Enhancing Learning and Safety

Proponents also argue that cell phones can significantly enhance learning by providing access to digital resources, especially in schools lacking sufficient tablets or computers. Cell phones enable students to contact parents in emergencies and facilitate better communication between students and teachers. Additionally, cell phones can reduce school costs by replacing physical textbooks with digital materials and help streamline administrative tasks, preparing students for a tech-driven future.

Student Perspectives on Mobile Learning

Research by Gikas and Grant (2013) highlights that a majority of students view mobile devices as essential for academic success. These devices help access course content, improve communication, and provide flexibility in learning. However, the research also acknowledges challenges such as technical issues and potential distractions, underscoring the need for effective classroom management and policies to integrate technology smoothly.

Personal Experience and Perspective

From personal experience, cell phones can indeed cause numerous issues in the classroom, including distractions and disruptions. However, I firmly believe that banning cell phones entirely is unnecessary and counterproductive. Effective classroom management is key to addressing these challenges. Teachers should be empowered to manage cell phone use individually, employing strategies that work best for their unique classroom dynamics. By setting clear expectations and modelling appropriate phone usage, teachers can teach students how to responsibly integrate technology into their learning environment.

What are your thoughts on banning cellphones in classrooms?


The debate on cell phones in the classroom is multifaceted, involving considerations of cognitive load, classroom management, emergency communication, and the potential benefits of technology in education. While the arguments against cell phone use focus on distractions and mental health concerns, the proponents highlight the importance of emergency communication and the educational benefits of mobile devices. Balancing these perspectives requires nuanced policies that maximize the advantages of technology while minimizing its potential drawbacks. Instead of outright bans, a more flexible approach that emphasizes individual classroom management can better address the complexities of this issue.

Bridging the Digital Divide: Reflections on an Equitable Technology Debate

Debating the role of technology in creating a more equitable society is both a challenging and enlightening experience. Recently, I found myself on the “agree” side of this debate, tasked with advocating for the equitable use of technology in education. This was no easy feat, especially considering the formidable arguments presented by the “disagree” side, which highlighted the complexities and pitfalls associated with technology integration. Nevertheless, I believe the discussion underscored the crucial role technology can play in leveling the educational playing field when implemented thoughtfully and inclusively.

The Agree Side: Advocating for Equity Through Technology

In preparing for the debate, I drew extensively from several key readings. Suzanne K. Damarin’s (2000) article, “The ‘Digital Divide’ Versus Digital Differences: Principles for Equitable Use of Technology in Education,” was foundational. Damarin argues that addressing the digital divide is not simply about providing access to technology but ensuring that all students can benefit from its use. She introduces five principles for equitable technology use: parsimony, accessibility, multiplicity, separability, and full utility. These principles are designed to guide educators in integrating technology in ways that are cost-effective, inclusive, and tailored to the diverse needs of students.

Additionally, the article “Improving Education for a More Equitable World: Futurist Perspectives” by Li and Liang (2024) highlighted the persistent inequalities in education due to factors like income, gender, and race, exacerbated by crises like the COVID-19 pandemic. This piece emphasized the importance of a comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach to educational improvement, incorporating comparative and international perspectives.

Monica Sulecio de Alvarez and Camille Dickson-Deane (2018), in their work “Avoiding Educational Technology Pitfalls for Inclusion and Equity,” discuss the importance of designing technology integration from a cultural perspective. They argue that educational technology should empower learners and support deep, meaningful learning experiences, avoiding pitfalls like viewing learners as mere consumers of technology or ignoring learners’ autonomy.

The Disagree Side: Highlighting the Complexities

The opposing side raised several critical points. The documentary “Without A Net” discusses the challenges of securing up-to-date devices, connectivity, and teacher training in the USA, highlighting the limitations of simply providing technology without adequate support. The article “Shaping Youth Discourse About Technology: Technological Colonization, Manifest Destiny, and the Frontier Myth in Facebook’s Public Pedagogy” argues that large social media companies perpetuate colonial behaviors by shaping user identities, presenting ethical concerns about technology’s role in education.

The Digital Divide in Canada,” a quantitative study by Statistics Canada, provides data showing the gap in internet use and access, underscoring the disparities between the “haves” and “have-nots.” These points were compelling and underscored the need for a nuanced approach to technology integration.

Personal Reflections: The Private School Experience

As a high school math teacher at a private school where technology is integrated into every classroom, I’ve witnessed firsthand how access to technology can create a more equitable learning environment. Our school mandates that every student has access to a computer, and for those who cannot afford one, the school provides the necessary devices. This policy ensures that all students, regardless of their socioeconomic backgrounds, have equal access to the tools they need to succeed.

In my classroom, technology has transformed the learning experience. Interactive simulations, online resources, and collaborative tools have made math more engaging and accessible for all students. The ability to tailor learning experiences to individual needs through adaptive software has been particularly beneficial, allowing each student to learn at their own pace and style. This experience has reinforced my belief in the potential of technology to foster educational equity when implemented thoughtfully and supported adequately.

Navigating the Debate: An Uncomfortable but Enlightening Journey

Being on the “agree” side of this debate was challenging, especially when faced with the nuanced and well-supported arguments of the “disagree” side. It was uncomfortable to navigate the complexities and acknowledge the legitimate concerns about technology’s role in perpetuating inequalities and ethical issues. However, this discomfort was also enlightening. It underscored the importance of not only advocating for access to technology but also ensuring its effective and equitable use.

The debate highlighted that while technology alone is not a panacea, it can be a powerful tool for promoting educational equity when combined with comprehensive strategies that address connectivity, training, and cultural responsiveness. By focusing on these aspects, we can harness the potential of technology to bridge the digital divide and create a more inclusive and equitable educational landscape.

In conclusion, the debate on the role of technology in education is complex and multifaceted. It requires a balanced approach that considers both the opportunities and the challenges. My experience at a private school has shown that with the right policies and support, technology can indeed lead to a more equitable society. However, this requires ongoing commitment, thoughtful implementation, and a willingness to address the underlying issues that contribute to the digital divide.

AI in Education: Revolutionizing Learning or Risking the Future?

The role of artificial intelligence (AI) in education has sparked a fervent and heated debate among educators, technologists, and policymakers. In a live, well-formatted debate, proponents argued that AI will bring about unprecedented improvements, while critics cautioned against potential risks. This blog post delves into both sides of the debate, examining key arguments and evidence from various sources and providing in-classroom examples of effective AI integration. This is a sensitive and uncharted territory for many of my peers, making the discussion all the more engaging and critical.

The Optimistic Perspective: Transforming Education

AI in Education 4.0

Advocates for AI in education often point to the concept of Education 4.0, a framework that integrates AI to enhance learning experiences and outcomes. An article titled “The Future of Learning: How AI is Revolutionizing Education 4.0” highlights several benefits of AI, such as personalized learning, intelligent tutoring systems, and streamlined administrative tasks. The Fourth Industrial Revolution demands an education system that is adaptive and responsive to individual needs, and AI promises to deliver just that.

Six Ways AI Will Revolutionize Education by 2025


The video linked above further explores how AI can transform education. It emphasizes six key areas:

  1. Personalized learning experiences tailored to individual student needs.
  2. Intelligent tutoring systems providing real-time feedback and support.
  3. Streamlined administrative tasks, freeing up educators to focus on teaching.
  4. Predictive analytics to identify and support at-risk students.
  5. Adaptation of curricula to align with market demands.
  6. Breaking down language barriers to make education more accessible globally.

In-Classroom Examples

  1. Personalized Learning Platforms: Platforms like DreamBox and Khan Academy use AI to analyze students’ performance and provide customized lessons and practice problems. For example, a student struggling with fractions might receive additional, varied exercises and immediate feedback, ensuring mastery before moving on to more complex topics.
  2. Intelligent Tutoring Systems: AI-powered tutoring systems such as Carnegie Learning’s MATHia provide individualized tutoring in math. These systems adjust the difficulty of problems based on real-time assessment of the student’s understanding, offering hints and explanations as needed.
  3. Administrative Efficiency: AI tools like Gradescope streamline the grading process by using machine learning to recognize and evaluate student work. Teachers can focus more on providing qualitative feedback and engaging with students rather than spending hours grading assignments.

The Catalyst for Change

Sarah Rubinson Levy, in her TEDx talk “Why AI is the Catalyst We Need to Change Education Forever,” argues that the current education system, rooted in the 19th-century “factory model,” is outdated. She advocates for a shift towards an education system that fosters curiosity, problem-solving, and critical thinking. Levy believes AI can be the catalyst for this transformation, enabling a more engaging and effective learning environment.

Guidance for Generative AI in Education and Research

The UNESCO report “Guidance for Generative AI in Education and Research” by Fengchun and Wayne (2023) provides a comprehensive roadmap for integrating AI into education. The report underscores the importance of ethical guidelines and robust frameworks to ensure AI tools are used effectively and responsibly. It highlights the need for educational stakeholders to embrace AI while addressing concerns such as data privacy and equity.

The Cautious Perspective: Potential Risks and Challenges

Infrastructure Concerns

E. Stefan Kehlenbach’s article “The Impact of Infrastructure: Considerations of GenerativeAI in the Classroom” raises critical questions about the readiness of educational institutions to integrate AI. Kehlenbach argues that without adequate infrastructure, the benefits of AI may be unevenly distributed, exacerbating existing inequalities. The article questions whether the investment in AI is justified, given the potential for significant societal disruption.

Privacy and Ethical Implications

Daniel Buck, in his article “AI is a Serious Threat to Student Privacy,” highlights the ethical concerns surrounding AI’s reliance on extensive personal data. The potential for data breaches and misuse of information poses significant risks to student privacy. Buck calls for stringent policies and robust safeguards to protect sensitive data and ensure ethical AI use in education.

Bias and Inequity

The National Education Association’s article “Does AI Have a Bias Problem?” by Aniya Greene-Santos addresses the issue of bias in AI systems. AI algorithms, often developed by non-diverse teams, can perpetuate existing biases, disproportionately affecting marginalized groups. Greene-Santos emphasizes the need for diverse AI creators and equitable policies to mitigate these biases and ensure fair treatment for all students.

In-Classroom Examples

  1. Protecting Student Data: Teachers using AI tools must ensure student data privacy by adhering to strict data protection protocols, ensuring that personal information is anonymized and securely stored.
  2. Addressing Bias: Educators can use AI tools that have undergone rigorous bias testing, ensuring that feedback and suggestions are fair and unbiased. Regular audits and feedback from diverse user groups can help identify and mitigate biases.

Pros and Cons of AI in Education

An article titled “The Pros and Cons of AI in Education and How it Will Impact Teachers in 2024” provides a balanced view of AI’s potential impact. While AI can enhance learning and administrative efficiency, it also poses threats to job security for educators, risks dehumanizing the learning process, incurs high costs, and fosters over-reliance on technology. The article underscores the irreplaceable role of teachers in fostering human connection and critical thinking.

Conclusion: Navigating the Future of AI in Education

The debate over AI in education is complex and multifaceted. Proponents envision a future where AI revolutionizes learning, making it more personalized, efficient, and accessible. Critics, however, urge caution, highlighting potential risks such as privacy concerns, bias, and the dehumanization of education.

The successful integration of AI in education hinges on careful implementation, strong ethical guidelines, and a dedication to tackling equity and access issues. As we move through this evolving landscape, balancing the potential benefits of AI with a mindful approach to its challenges is vital to ensure that the educational revolution is truly beneficial. To make progress rather than regress, it’s important to view AI as an educational tool rather than a shortcut for students. By teaching them proper usage, we can instill a sense of responsibility in leveraging this powerful technology.

The Great Debate on Technology in the Classroom

DEBATE #1: Technology and its ability to enhance learning

In my recent educational technology class, we had an insightful and engaging debate on whether technology in the classroom enhances learning. My classmates presented their arguments using various scholarly articles, making the discussion well-structured and informative. Here’s a recap of some key points made during the debate and my reflections on the overall experience.

Pro-Technology Arguments

1. Enhanced Engagement and Accessibility:
Proponents of technology in the classroom argued that digital tools significantly enhance student engagement and accessibility. For instance, mobile technology allows students to access educational content anytime and anywhere, making learning more flexible and engaging. Straker et al. (2018) found that mobile technology dominates school children’s IT use in advantaged communities. It can increase engagement in learning activities despite some associated health concerns (Straker, Harris, Joosten, & Howie, 2018). Furthermore, immersive virtual reality-based classrooms have been shown to enhance students’ learning performance in science lessons by providing interactive and engaging experiences (Liu, Wang, Lei, Wang, & Ren, 2020).

2. Improved Academic Performance:
Another point favouring technology was its potential to improve academic performance through personalized learning. Adaptive learning platforms can tailor educational content to individual student needs, helping them learn at their own pace and according to their unique learning styles. The Pew Research Center’s study by Purcell, Buchanan, and Friedrich (2013) highlighted that digital tools positively impact student writing and how writing is taught in schools, suggesting that technology can enhance traditional educational methods (Purcell, Buchanan, & Friedrich, 2013). Additionally, Furió et al. (2015) found that mobile learning can be more effective than traditional classroom lessons in specific contexts, leading to better student outcomes (Furió, Juan, Seguí, & Vivó, 2015).

3. Access to a Wealth of Resources:
Technology provides students with access to a vast array of resources and information that would otherwise be unavailable. The shift to online education during the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted this benefit. Shaikh et al. (2023) discussed how the pandemic necessitated a move to online learning, which, despite cybersecurity challenges, offered students continuous access to educational materials and resources (Shaikh, Khan, Sultana, & Akhter, 2023).

Anti-Technology Arguments

1. Distraction and Multitasking:
Critics argue that technology can be a significant source of distraction for students. Junco and Cotten (2012) found a negative correlation between multitasking with digital devices and academic performance. Students who frequently used Facebook or texted while studying had lower GPAs, indicating that technology might hinder rather than help learning when not used appropriately (Junco & Cotten, 2012).

2. Physical Health Concerns:
Another concern was the potential adverse effects on students’ physical health. Prolonged use of mobile technology can lead to musculoskeletal and visual symptoms among schoolchildren, as Straker et al. (2018) found. This raises questions about the long-term implications of integrating technology into daily classroom activities (Straker et al., 2018).

3. Digital Inequality:
There was also a discussion on digital inequality and how it might exacerbate educational disparities. Warschauer and Matuchniak (2010) analyzed evidence of equity in access, use, and outcomes of new technology. They found that students from disadvantaged backgrounds might not benefit equally from digital tools due to a lack of access and resources. This poses a significant challenge in ensuring that technology enhances learning for all students, not just those who can afford it (Warschauer & Matuchniak, 2010).

My Reflections on the Debate

Watching my classmates debate this topic was incredibly engaging. The structured format allowed both sides to present their arguments clearly and thoughtfully respond to each other’s points. It was fascinating to see how well-researched arguments and real-world examples were used to back up each stance.

I found myself torn between two opposing views. On one hand, the benefits of technology in enhancing engagement and providing personalized learning experiences are undeniable. On the other hand, the concerns about distraction, physical health, and digital inequality are equally compelling.

One particularly intriguing argument came from Harris, Al-Bataineh, and Al-Bataineh (2016), who demonstrated that one-to-one technology programs can significantly enhance student academic achievement and motivation (Harris, Al-Bataineh, & Al-Bataineh, 2016). Additionally, Kris Alexander’s TED Talk highlighted how video games can level up the way we learn by making learning more engaging and interactive (Alexander, 2021).

In conclusion, the debate highlighted that the effectiveness of technology in the classroom largely depends on how it is implemented. It is essential to strike a balance, ensuring digital tools support and enhance learning without introducing new barriers or health concerns. As educators, it is crucial to be mindful of these factors and work towards integrating technology to benefit all students. Technology does indeed enhance learning.


Furió, D., Juan, M.-C., Seguí, I., & Vivó, R. (2015). Mobile learning vs. traditional classroom lessons: a comparative study. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 31(3), 189–201.

Harris, J. L., Al-Bataineh, M. T., & Al-Bataineh, A. (2016). One-to-One Technology and its Effect on Student Academic Achievement and Motivation. Contemporary Educational Technology, 7(4), 368-.

Junco, R., & Cotten, S. R. (2012). No, A 4 U: The relationship between multitasking and academic performance. Computers & Education, 59(2), 505-514.

Liu, R., Wang, L., Lei, J., Wang, Q., & Ren, Y. (2020). Effects of an immersive virtual reality‐based classroom on students’ learning performance in science lessons. British Journal of Educational Technology, 51(6), 2034–2049.

Purcell, K., Buchanan, J., & Friedrich, L. (2013). The Impact of Digital Tools on Student Writing and How Writing is Taught in Schools. Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. Retrieved from

Shaikh, S., Khan, N., Sultana, A., & Akhter, N. (2023). Online Education and Increasing Cyber Security Concerns During Covid-19 Pandemic. Proceedings of ICAMIDA 2022.

Straker, L., Harris, C., Joosten, J., & Howie, E. K. (2018). Mobile technology dominates school children’s IT use in an advantaged school community and is associated with musculoskeletal and visual symptoms. Ergonomics, 61(5), 658-669.

Warschauer, M., & Matuchniak, T. (2010). New technology and digital worlds: Analyzing evidence of equity in access, use, and outcomes. Review of Research in Education, 34(1), 179-225.

Alexander, K. (2021). How video games can level up the way you learn. TED.


DEBATE #2: Social Media is ruining childhood

My educational technology class recently debated whether social media is ruining childhood. My classmates presented compelling arguments using various scholarly articles and online resources, making the discussion comprehensive and engaging. Here’s a recap of some key points in the debate and my reflections on the overall experience.

Pro-Social Media Arguments

1. Social Connectivity and Support:
Proponents argue that social media provides a platform for children and teenagers to connect with peers, form relationships, and seek support. According to a report by O’Keeffe and Clarke-Pearson (2011), social media allows teens to accomplish tasks crucial to them offline, such as staying connected with friends and family, making new friends, sharing pictures, and exchanging ideas. Social media participation can also offer adolescents more profound benefits that extend into their view of self, community, and the world (O’Keeffe & Clarke-Pearson, 2011).

2. Educational Opportunities:
Another point favouring social media is its potential to enhance learning and provide educational content. Social media platforms can be used to share educational resources, participate in online discussions, and collaborate on school projects. O’Keeffe and Clarke-Pearson (2011) highlighted that middle and high school students use social media to connect on homework and group projects, enhancing their learning opportunities (O’Keeffe & Clarke-Pearson, 2011).

3. Development of Digital Literacy:
Proponents also emphasized the importance of digital literacy in the modern world. Social media use can help children and teenagers develop essential digital skills for future academic and career success. Proficient in navigating social media platforms can also teach critical thinking skills as users learn to discern credible information from misinformation.

Anti-Social Media Arguments

1. Impact on Mental Health:
Critics argue that social media can have a detrimental impact on children’s mental health. The Child Mind Institute points out that excessive social media use can lead to issues such as anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. The constant comparison with peers and the pressure to present a perfect online image can contribute to these mental health challenges (Child Mind Institute).

2. Shortened Attention Spans:
Another concern is that social media is shortening children’s attention spans. An article from The Queen’s Journal suggests that the constant influx of information and the fast-paced nature of social media can make it difficult for children to focus on longer, more demanding tasks. This can affect their academic performance and ability to engage in deep, meaningful learning (The Queen’s Journal).

3. Cyberbullying and Privacy Issues:
Critics also highlighted the risks of cyberbullying and privacy concerns associated with social media use. Cyberbullying can have severe emotional and psychological effects on children and teenagers. O’Keeffe and Clarke-Pearson (2011) discuss the prevalence of cyberbullying and its potential to cause depression, anxiety, severe isolation, and even suicide (O’Keeffe & Clarke-Pearson, 2011). Furthermore, heavy social media use can negatively impact parent-child relationships, as indicated by Sampasa-Kanyinga et al. (2020), who found that heavy use of social media is associated with greater odds of negative relationships between parents and children (Sampasa-Kanyinga, Goldfield, Kingsbury, Clayborne, & Colman, 2020).

My Reflections on the Debate

The debate on whether social media is ruining childhood was incredibly engaging and thought-provoking. The structured format allowed both sides to present their arguments clearly and thoughtfully respond to each other’s points. It was fascinating to see how well-researched arguments and real-world examples were used to back up each stance.

I found myself leaning towards a balanced perspective. While social media has undeniable benefits, such as fostering connectivity and offering educational opportunities, it poses significant risks to children’s mental health, attention spans, and privacy. The key takeaway for me is that moderation and guidance are essential. Parents, educators, and policymakers must work together to ensure that social media is used to maximize its benefits while minimizing its potential harms.

In conclusion, the debate highlighted that social media’s impact on childhood is complex and multifaceted. It is crucial to approach this issue with a balanced perspective, recognizing social media’s opportunities and challenges. We can help children navigate the digital world safely and effectively by fostering digital literacy and providing appropriate guidance.

Thank you for reading! If you have any thoughts or experiences regarding social media and childhood, feel free to share them in the comments. Let’s continue this meaningful conversation.


Child Mind Institute. (n.d.). How Using Social Media Affects Teenagers. Retrieved from

O’Keeffe, G. S., & Clarke-Pearson, K. (2011). The impact of social media on children, adolescents, and families. Pediatrics, 127(4), 800-804.

Sampasa-Kanyinga, H., Goldfield, G. S., Kingsbury, M., Clayborne, Z., & Colman, I. (2020). Social media use and parent-child relationship: A cross-sectional study of adolescents. Journal of Community Psychology, 48(3), 793-803.

The Queen’s Journal. (n.d.). Social Media is Shortening Our Attention Spans. Retrieved from

Tech-Enhanced Teaching: A Day in the Life of a Connected Educator

Personal Life
In my personal life, I start the day by checking social media apps like Snapchat, Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook. These platforms help me stay connected with friends and family, follow trends, and get inspiration for creative projects. I often use Canva to design posters, social media posts, and other graphics, which helps me personally and professionally. Whether sharing moments on Instagram stories or creating engaging content for TikTok, these apps are a significant part of my daily routine. I also use X, formerly Twitter, to stay engaged in the Education community, where I share insights, learn from others, and keep up with the latest trends and discussions.

Teaching Life
My day as a teacher is deeply intertwined with technology. I use various digital tools to enhance my students’ learning experience and streamline my workload. Here’s a breakdown of how I integrate these tools into my day:

1. Kahoot and Blooket: These interactive platforms are my go-to for engaging students fun and competitively. I often start the class with a quick quiz or game on Kahoot to review previous lessons or introduce new concepts. Blooket is another favourite for its versatility and how it gamifies learning, keeping students excited and involved.

2. EduAide and Goblin Tools: These AI-powered tools make planning and managing my course load more manageable. EduAide helps me create lesson plans, find resources, and even grade assignments efficiently. Goblin Tools assist with organizing tasks, setting reminders, and ensuring I stay on top of all my responsibilities. I really like the ability to have student utilize a step-by-step process for completing assignments/tasks in a way they understand.

3. Spotify for Podcasters, formerly Anchor: I always provide this as an option for student’s to show their learning. I found it easy to create and share podcasts with me and their peers using this app.

Interactions with Students and Colleagues
Connecting with students and colleagues is seamless, thanks to various email and messaging apps, specifically Microsoft Teams and Microsoft Outlook. These platforms are essential for staying in touch with colleagues, scheduling meetings, and discussing school-related matters.

Balancing Personal and Professional Life
Balancing my personal and professional life involves strategically using technology to manage time effectively. I set aside specific hours for individual activities and disconnected from work-related tasks during these times. Utilizing digital tools helps me stay organized and maintain a healthy work-life balance.

In summary, my day involves leveraging technology for both personal enjoyment and professional efficiency. Technology plays a pivotal role in my daily routine, from engaging students with interactive platforms to staying connected with loved ones through social media.

Foundations & Pre-Calc 10 Unit Plan

In ECS 495, I was able to practice my unit planning skills. This was great because it has been quite some time due to my maternity leave. I am always open to feedback because I am constantly trying to mould and shape my delivery. I am currently trying to transition to a Universal Design for Learning approach. If you have any information or feedback, please let me know in the comments below.

The unit plan itself is from the Saskatchewan curriculum and textbook. This unit would typically be 7 lessons but likely 14 classes. I have only shared three of those seven lessons.

I hope that you gain something from this unit plan. If not, I hope that your feedback allows me to gain some more knowledge! Below the PDF section, you will find out more about Universal Design for Learning.

Download my unit and lessons here:

Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

So What? Now What?

In ECS 495, I was also able to utilize many resources via podcast and/or YouTube. Sometimes I don’t always thrive in auditory learning however, as I become older, I am finding that I am a more well-rounded learner so I really enjoyed listening to peoples’ experiences and thoughts around the topics.

Colinda Clyne uses the quote, “so what? Now what?” in her Anti-Racist Educator Reads podcast. Our professor allowed us to use this type of reflection after listening to some podcasts. I utilized podcasting to respond using the “What? So What? Now what?” model to fulfill this portion of the course. This model focuses on breaking up reflection into meaningful connections. I have dabbled in using this previously and I love it! I grew up with a more traditional way of learning and so I didn’t have the opportunity to do something quite like this. I used the app Anchor to do this but I also really enjoy its user-friendly platform. Anchor would be a great app for getting students started on their podcasting journey.

As I am a lifelong learner, it is key that I continually build my plethora of knowledge whenever possible. To have an opportunity to continue to learn, especially when suggested specific resources, is a blessing! The resources I was able to listen to have helped build my views and strategies for my future classrooms and I am so thrilled to implement them. The main idea that comes to me when I think of the answer to “so what, now what” is that of a quote from Vivian Gauvin, my professor for ECS 495, “Now that I know better, I will be better.” This could not be more true, I am very reflective and I like to take in feedback and new knowledge to better myself for my students and my personal and professional growth.

Please enjoy listening to my reflection on the podcasts I was suggested and visit the links in the description to listen to them for yourself!

The Ultimate Toolkit

In this blog post, I will review several of the resources I have come across that I find very helpful as far as moving towards the “ultimate” classroom. I was challenged to look through an Education course this semester to look further into Math resources but also First Nations and Indigenous ways of knowing and bringing that knowledge to my classroom. Do you like what I have found? Click on the titles of the resources and check them out! Check out my brief breakdown of those below:

Making Math Moments That Matter

This is a jam-packed resource as far as Math resources go. This is a great tool to being a lifelong learner. Through several episodes and topics, you will find yourself with many more resources to create the ultimate math classroom and to set up your students for success. Most of this information shared can be generalized for all types of learners and grade-levels. It would be beneficial to remember that they have many resources outside of their podcast. Check out their website here. They have a 12-week program that would be great for some professional development. They also have many unit plans and lesson plans. One thing to note is that they are from the United States so those resources may or may not align with Saskatchewan curricula but they will be great guides. Kyle Pearce and Jon Orr are both full of information and are great to listen to. Check out their websites by clicking on their names.

Reconciliation Through Indigenous Education: UBC

This link will take you to a 6-week course on changing institutional structures, practices, and policies to create environments that are committed to strengthening our relationships with Indigenous peoples. I have added myself to the mailing list to ensure I get a spot in this course. It is such a huge part of who we need to be and how we can get to that place of sharing new knowledge and ways of knowing to our students. I think this course will be a huge piece of learning that will lead to my confidence in speaking and bringing knowledge to the classroom.

Sum of it all Podcast

This podcast is a great resource for several reasons. They use their platform to review books, call it an online “book club”, and they allow for continuing of the conversation. The platform itself and its concept are quite rare and intriguing. By using the #SumMathChat on Twitter, you can join in on the conversation about thoughts and reflection on these resources that they have chosen.

The first resource they used was the Building Thinking Classrooms in Mathematics book by Peter Liljedahl. They talked a bit about bias in students’ thinking and how we can diminish that bias in the classroom. This was ultimately so that we can figure out how our students think and how we can use that to help them achieve success. They also dive deep into the types of tasks we use, how we form groups, where students work, how we arrange desks, how we answer questions, when, where, and how tasks are given, and several more! This will be a great resource as I follow my new Math adventure.

The second resource they reflected on was Humanizing Disability by Paulo Tan, Alexis Padilla, Erica N. Mason, and James Sheldon. This is a great resource for learning how to have students with disabilities have full access to math and the thinking that goes along with it. The learning follows several topics such as expanding the meaning of math, human rights issues within math, exploring disability knowledge and identity as tools, and building inclusive classrooms. This would certainly be a great resource as I move through my Education career and meet new students. This seems like it could be generalized to any grade level. This is definitely something I will use to fill gaps in my own knowledge.

Make Math Not Suck

This resource is awesome and would certainly have been something I would have googled if I had the capacity! This is a blog by Mandi Tolen, a high school math teacher, and she uses her blog as a way to share information in hopes of her viewers finding inspiration and ideas to make your classroom the best for your students. Just reading that portion of her blog, I knew this would be a resource that I will keep tabbed in my Google Chrome browser. She also has a book that helps teachers create a fun and engaging learning environment. This is something that I will either invest in personally or have my future school purchase for me. You can buy it here. She has some really great ideas as far as exit tickets and other strategies for assessment that I will certainly be implementing into my lessons.

Wheeler’s Thoughts on Teaching

This resource is a blog by Laura Wheeler, whom I have now followed on Twitter, as should you. In this blog post (linked in the title), she talks about how she wanted to shift her classroom to a problem-based learning environment. I think I also want to achieve this. She explains doing this in a way that incorporates visibly random groups and vertical non-permanent surfaces. However, this is calculated in the way that we ensure that enough time is given for the task but not too much time, so that all students remain engaged. She used several different methods to keep in mind for choosing groups in the classroom, such as: Shuffle Names, or Team Maker.

Some rules to keep in mind as far as being involved in a group with one writing utensil:

  • the person with chalk can only write down what their group member tell them to
  • the teacher controls when to switch the chalk
  • teacher can erase work if students are not allowing their group members to solve the problem
  • sitting down is not allowed
  • no pre-work can be done on paper before the board is used

These are great reminders for group work when placing that group in an environment that includes writing on surfaces whether working on paper, chalkboard, or whiteboard.

BCAMT: Weekly Math Tasks

This is a great resource for quick and easy non-curricular tasks that are easily implemented into several lessons. Being non-curricular this means that students should be able to start and investigate by drawing pictures, making guesses or asking questions. This resource is intended for grades 8-12. The activities are in great detail and are easily explained to students. To enrich any of these tasks, you may ask students to explain their thinking or show creativity when finding solutions. This is also a Canadian site so it helps to know that this is directly related to Canadian curriculum, even though it may be different provincially. Check out the example beside this text!

Teaching Through Problems Worth Solving

This is an inquiry-based, curriculum-linked, differentiated math problem resource directed towards grade 8 students. Although this may or may not be my goal as far as a position, I have the experience with grade 8 math and was interested in learning more. This resource has a grand focus on teaching through problem solving in a way that is so refreshing and I feel it can be adapted for other grade levels as well. This resource explains the key components that are necessary for a problem-solving mindset and classroom. This is a bit related to the previous resources in the way that problem-solving seems to be the theme. In this specific resource, they explain that this approach is accessible to all students, meaning it has multiple entry points, can lend natural differentiation where students are able to address a problem at their level and experience success. This directly connects to a resource I had access to recently, UDL as a Key to Equity by Cult of Pedagogy. This just builds more on my previous knowledge and will help further along that learning.

Why Teachers Want Math with More Human Ties

This entry on KQED organization website by Kara Newhouse was a breath of fresh air. It spoke about how anxiety-provoking a typical math class can be to both students and teachers because of its un-engaging content and delivery. If we learn to “humanize” a classroom, we can allow for kids to bring their ideas and interact with them and make sense of it. Unfortunately, most math classes ask for speed and accuracy when solving problems which sets a large portion of your class to be unsuccessful. When we allow students to see math as a process, not a race to the correct answer, we can encourage “rough draft thinking”. This is a great resource and has many other resources connected to it that can further this thinking and how to implement this concept into the classroom. I have a lot more learning to do when it comes to this but I am fuelled to do so.


This resource is intended for grades 6-8 and includes online work. All students would need to have a computer for this program. This does have the opportunity to be blended with offline and online resources. This focuses on students’ ideas being the engine of the curriculum. Students can sketch and use mathematical thinking to power conversations and deepen thinking and knowledge. Again, this is a problem-based resource that helps promote mathematical curiosity and engagement. I am starting to learn more about more about problem-based lessons and approaches to teaching math and I really like it. It will be something to try and continue to perfect as I continue in my career.

Creative Ways to Assess Math Understanding

This post by Emelina Minero focuses on rethinking what assessments are supposed to accomplish and that assessments should be about moving mathematical knowledge forward. The reading challenges teachers to move away from solving a series of equations and ask the deep thinking questions that allow students to break down problems or explain how to reach its solution. They can do this in a multitude of ways using the Ed Tech tools that I have learnt about in my most recent course EDTC 300 from the University of Regina. A few examples could be a Google Doc, video, or snapping a photo of their work. We can also use these products of knowledge to help explain to their peers if properly done. This way we can have students shown that they are achieving what they consider to be success. Again, there are a lot of other resources connected to this article that would be great in the continuation of this learning.

The Problem With Giving Math Tests Online

happy black woman using laptop for online work
Photo by Katerina Holmes on

This article by Madeline Will touches on the fact that online testing will certainly create opportunity for cheating, especially when students have to come up with a single answer. Teachers are starting to focus more on assessing students’ conceptual understanding. This has forced teachers to rethink what assessments are supposed to accomplish. It is important to think creatively and out-of-the-box when assessing student understanding and thinking then using that to support instructional decisions. This has definitely piqued my interest and has me reflecting on my current experience with an online math course at the university level. There are certainly a lot of individuals who have cheated their way through a course. Unfortunately, I had to reflect on the fact that its important to remember that Google exists and if you’re adapting others’ work, you need to really adjust those things to ensure its not “google-able.” There are some other great points made in this article and its great to have tabbed as well.

Math First Peoples

This teacher resource guide is designed for Math teachers in British Columbia and was developed by the First Nations Education Steering Committee and BC Ministry of Education. This document aims to increase student success by making adjustments in pedagogy and approach to make mathematics feel more inclusive and engaging. This also supports the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. This resource is directed at both elementary and secondary levels. I really like the idea that they are contributing to reconciliation by building greater understanding of the skills and ways of knowing of First Peoples for all students. This really encourages and supports me as a teacher as I am to create a respectful environment. I will have this ordered for me to have a physical copy so that I can also strive for what they are promoting. This is just another piece to becoming an ally for First nations people and their ways of knowing. Download the PDF here.

Others to explore:

Watch for more resources to show up in this blog post and future ones!

talk soon

Seven Fallen Feathers

As a learner, I felt that I had a very lacking education when it came to learning about First Nations people and their history as it relates to the European settlers. I had the opportunity this semester to listen to the audiobook for Seven Fallen Feathers by Tanya Talaga. I also was given guided questions for each chapter and responded accordingly. We were given the option of a “Quick Write” or “Quick Draw”. As you can see, I did a combination of both. The pictures are in correspondence to the chapter reading and may or may not have connection to the writing portion.

PLEASE READ: this is a reminder that your views and responses may be different from mine as far as responding to the guided questions. Please be kind and remember that your views and responses are equally as important. Our minds think differently and that is OKAY! Neither of us are wrong in the way we respond to them.

Chapters 1 & 2: What aspects of the book do you find challenging?

Chapters 3 & 4: How do you see the racism embedded in public institutions adding to the problems of Indigenous youth in Northern communities?

Chapters 5 & 6: What role can we play as individuals in promoting justice and equality for First Nations’ youth?

Chapters 7 & 8: How did this book influence your thoughts on the institutional racism faced by Indigenous peoples in Canada, as well as the legacy of the harms done by the residential schools?

Chapters 9 & 10: What do you think Talaga intended to convey by giving readers intimate portraits of the youths’ lives?

Epilogue: Can the settlers and the Indigenous people come together as one and move forward in harmony? What are your thoughts on this?

Thank you for reading my thoughts and responses to the guided questions. If you do read or listen to the book, I would love if you shared your responses but please do not feel obligated to.

Thanks again to Vivian Gauvin for providing the opportunity to unlearn and relearn my ways of knowing.