Never Send a Human to Do a Machine’s Job

Yong Zhao 2015
Read: 2016
Education/Leadership, Non-Fiction

This is a thoughtful book about how technology should be used in education and learning. In spite of increasing amounts of money invested in technology in schools, there have not been major shifts in student achievement. This book talks about five reasons that may have happened and offers recommendations for how technology can positively impact student learning. For me, the most important aspects were teachers should focus on what makes them irreplaceable. (This will seem like this should be a recurring theme if you’re reading all of my entries.) Teachers are irreplaceable in their abilities to motivate, inspire, encourage, and know their students. Teachers who invest their time in their students and personalize learning for that student, can do things that no computer can ever do.


Another point that I appreciated from the book was the idea that if our students are already living in a digital world that will only become more digital over time, we should spend a whole lot of time helping students to be digitally literate and competent. The recent election and fake news brought on by the Russians is a perfect example of that. We need to be able to discern what is real and what is not real. We need to be able to discern opinion from fact. We need students to be able to ascertain the value of what they find in the world of technology. A big task, and we should be teaching it. It’s a very good book, but it does not give clear and direct answers. It provides a framework for asking a lot of strong questions and that is a good start.



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