In my opinion, Flint Hill and Washington Waldorf are on opposite sides of the spectrum, but not in a good way. Each one is too far.
I like how Flint Hill incorporates technology all the time but all the time is too much! Students should not be allowed to chat/text/browse social media/do assignments for other classes while the teacher is lecturing. Nina was able to make the choice to pay attention but she is just one student, what about the ADD students who find it hard to concentrate anyway? And part of me is just a tiny bit suspicious that had she not been in the process of being observed by a journalist and interviewed for an article, she probably would have checked her messages.
I like how Washington Waldorf embraces and promotes the idea of hands-on learning and the use of a pen and pencil. One of my biggest gripes with students today is the lack of skill for proper writing and grammar. They don’t care and they don’t try! Why would they when they have spell check? And if they are being asked to “reflect” via Twitter and only have 140 characters, obviously they are going to skimp on grammar. Writing is definitely a skill that students will need, possibly forever, no matter what career they end up in. On the other hand, I did find it odd that there was no sort of technology in the school at all. Writing is important but so is typing because most likely, Nina will be doing her writing via a keyboard. (Sidenote, I never learned how to type correctly, as in my fingers are not on the proper keys, but I can type pretty quickly and rarely make mistakes :)).
What I got out of this article is that these featured schools are examples of extreme cases. Private schools have the money and freedom to do as they please so why not do so? In reality, I feel that most schools are at a happy medium, or at least working to get there. They incorporate technology, but do not neglect the traditional skills. Children need both, they need balance. We, as educators and parents, need to make sure they receive this.
How do you feel about technology?