David Martin (contributed image).

Effect of electronics on students to be discussed at Central Alberta Teachers’ Convention

Thousands of area instructors will gather on Feb. 22 and 23 at RDC

Hand-held electronics, student diversity and standardized testing in the classroom will be discussed at next week’s Teachers’ Convention in Red Deer.

About 2,200 teachers from five school divisions across Central Alberta will gather at Red Deer College Feb. 22 and 23 to hear from experts on these sometimes contentious topics.

With growing concern both in and out of the classroom about the effect hand-held electronic devices have on young minds, one of the keynote speakers at the convention will be Dr. Michael Rich of the Harvard Medical School.

Rich will discuss studies that have found electronics are becoming “digital babysitters,” replacing the role of parents. “Instead of parents spending time or reading to their kids, they are being replaced by iPads,” said David Martin, president of the Central Alberta Teachers’ Convention.

Another speaker will be American educator Rick Wormeli, who authored the book Fair isn’t Always Equal. He will talk about striving to better meet diversity needs in the classroom.

Martin said class sizes are getting larger and students aren’t always starting from the same point, in term of learning. There are more English as a Second Language students, kids with disabilities, as well as students from disadvantaged homes.

“One in nine students in Alberta live in poverty,” added Martin, which affects their performance in the classroom.

Standardized testing, or the “data-fication” of students will be discussed by David Rutkowski, a professor of education at the University of Oslo in Norway.

Martin, who’s the lead math teacher for Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools, said there’s concerned about the major push to prepare students for standardized provincial tests, which are still done in Alberta in grades 6 and 9.

There’s the sense many questions are arbitrary and not relevant, added Martin, who believes most teachers prefer the student learning assessments done at the start of Grade 3, which determines what learning level each student is at.

Most schools in the Red Deer area will be closed next week because of Family Day, winter break, and the teachers’ convention.



lmichelin@reddeeradvocate.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Pro-pipelines rally draws crowd to City Hall

Canadian Taxpayers Federation says Canada missing out on billions in revenue

Red Deer Hospice celebrates hitting fundraising halfway mark

Red Deer Hospice Society in middle of $5.2-million expansion

Separate events raised funds for Alzheimer’s and cancer

Nearly half of Canadians will be diagnosed with a form of cancer in their lifetimes.

No business case for Trans Mountain expansion, says former environment minister

VANCOUVER — A former Liberal environment minister is urging Prime Minister Justin… Continue reading

School bus driver charged with drunk driving

THE CANADIAN PRESS EDMONTON — Three impaired driving-related charges have been laid… Continue reading

Canadians in Hong Kong worried for neighbours as protests roil former colony

As mass protests in Hong Kong grab headlines around the world, expatriate… Continue reading

To hit environment goals, feds should create ‘super’ tax credit, report says

OTTAWA — A government-struck expert panel is calling for new “super-deduction” tax… Continue reading

Calgary’s Michael Klukas to live childhood ambition in Stampeders opener

CALGARY — The dream never died for Michael Klukas. Born and raised… Continue reading

Thompson sustains torn left ACL in Warriors’ Game 6 loss

OAKLAND, Calif. — Klay Thompson sustained a torn ACL in his left… Continue reading

Championship timeline: Reliving the Toronto Raptors’ road to the NBA title

The Toronto Raptors captured their first NBA championship in franchise history on… Continue reading

Top 20 Global Concert Tours from Pollstar

The Top 20 Global Concert Tours ranks artists by average box office… Continue reading

Swift calls out homophobes on new song, announces 7th album

NEW YORK — Taylor Swift’s latest song has a new target: homophobes.… Continue reading

Blue Jays hit 3 HRs, notch 17 hits in 12-3 rout of Orioles

Blue Jays 12, Orioles 3 BALTIMORE — Lourdes Gurriel Jr. homered to… Continue reading

Most Read