Sunday, July 31, 2011

Morrell's Project Proposal

The first content based topic I get to with my students in Plate Tectonics. I'd really like to have my students use SketchUp to construct their final project which will be a model of one of the three types of plate boundaries (Convergent, Divergent, and Transform). Working with a partner, either in their class or not, students would construct the model and using their "base" students would create a stop motion animation of how their boundary works. They would take screen shots when they are done with each step and then use them in a movie creator. The students don't have Macbooks at my school so we can't use iMovie but there are a lot of web-based movie creators that they can use.

I want the students to be comfortable with SketchUp so I will have at least one class devoted to learning the basics. Most likely it'll take the form of how we learned SketchUp our last day of STI2011 as more of a student lead learning process. I also want them to use this program because our our CADD program that they can apply to get into sophomore year. The teacher of that program uses SketchUp as a basis of learning for the more professional drafting software that they use. I feel as though I would be helping my students get a leg up on that type of programing.

During this process I'll be taking pictures and short movies to load on either my school website or a blog that I'll create for this project. As the project moves forward students will have the option to start taking the pictures and videos and loading them to my computer. If I have this on my school site it's run from FirstClass so I wouldn't want them to be able to access my email!

Computer Games Chapter 1

In this first chapter, Shaffer makes the case for authentic learning. An educational progressive, Shaffer argues that students "should be able to pass the test and problem solve". (my emphasis)

The Debating Game is an example of how students use argumentation and content knowledge to "role play". The use of argumentation, a necessary skill, is what makes the game authentic. Students are role playing because they are just pretending to be judges and historians.

Like Kate, as a math, science and newly minted social studies teacher, this concept of teaching and learning certainly caught my attention. This activity makes sense to me and I would like to try this.

I am not so sure that I could sell this activity as a game. My students see games as competition that provide immediate feedback and, in the case of computer games, endless "do-overs". I think the motivation would be feedback from others.

The author lists four types of gamers:
- those who like to succeed at tasks
- those who like to find out as much as they can
- socializers
- those who like power
I wonder how I can move students into the "find out as much as they can" category?

Shaffer concludes this chapter, and all the others, with open-ended questions that an educator or parent might ask when evaluating a game.

- Does the feedback, points or game action, give the student an indication of their successful reasoning?

- Is the game authentic in it's learning?

This chapter caused me to evaluate my learning activities. How many are authentic learning vs learning for facts and what is the balance? I am certain that there are some facts to be learned, spelling rules, for instance, but I am just as convinced that we could do a better job of teaching students to think critically.

(Picture from

Saturday, July 30, 2011

iBrain Chapter 9 - The Future

So where do we go from here? What is the future

They are currently working on computers controlled by brain waves, we have HUDs with interactive controls and lets not talk about motion activated games like Kinect and Wii.

Think back... what a wonder it would have been for all of us to have our own laptop while in class. I keep telling my current students your kids are going to say, "I can't believe you had to carry around that large laptop!"

With laser projected keyboards, remote controlled sized projectors and our smart phones having more computer power then last years laptops the future looks small

but unlike the books author maybe this may not be all bad.

So... in the end what did you think? More important... next year when they ask me what book should we read do YOU have any recommendations

Thursday, July 28, 2011

iBrain Chapter 8 - Adapt or Die

The never ending battle to upgrade.  Apple is notorious for putting out a new product then releasing a cheaper faster version a few months later.

"Hello, my name is Keith, I am an early adopter"
Some times getting the latest and greatest works out... the new ipod revolutionized mp3 players, as did the cd burner.  I spent many nights burning files with my $300 cd burner.  However, my mp3 player that hold only 64 megabytes (maybe 1 audio cd of 12 songs) didn't work.

We have all had the experience of trying to decide what to buy at the box store or just buying a new computer because ours crashed.   As a tech guru for my family, friends and colleagues I am always struck by their desire to upgrade to a newer technology rather then truly their need.

Psst... I will tell you a secret all the tech gadget companies plan on obsolescence.
When internet finally hit.. it really is not about your computer speed but your internet.  Most now only need a terminal with a fast internet connect.  Very few are gaming, video editing, or doing other cpu/memory intensive activities on the computer.

This chapter is basically a tutorial on basic computer skills from email etiquette, internet searching, to online safety.   I found it dated since most of us live in this world now.

My students have matured past some of these issues, I remember starting off having to explain about why you don't put picture with your name online.  Now if they are doing it it is on purpose or friends are doing it for them (with or without their knowledge) and they have some concept of the consequences.

* I would point out that the Natives still need to be taught online etiquette skills.  Just because they are natives does NOT mean they know how to properly do things.  Schools are notorious for having students show teacher/kids how to do something on computers.  Yes they may know how to use the tool, but may not know how to use it properly.

Monday, July 25, 2011

iBrain Chapter 7 : Reconnecting Face to Face

Well, I suppose this is what I get for missing the last day of class: the longest chapter in the book.  Haha, just kidding! :)

Alrightie, chapter seven starts off with an example of what is supposed to represent ordinary immigrant/native interaction.  The immigrant is polite, charismatic, and friendly, while the natives are rude, technology obsessed, and don't speak or make eye contact.  The immigrant makes the decision not to save his business via the native's obviously successful business plan because he's unable to relate to the native socially.

There is some very interesting discussion of a part of the brain called the insula, which is responsible for translating sensory experience into emotion.  The authors also discuss how this phenomenon partners with other parts of the brain to help us to experience the world in the varying, personal, specific ways that we all do.  Sociopathic people (those who lack the capacity for guilt, empathy, or love, and often commit crimes with no thought of the repercussions), are generally found to be lacking in function of these specific parts of the brain.

The rest of this chapter is devoted to instruction on how to behave in social situations, how to "survive" without this burgeoning generation's reliance on technology, and how to build self-esteem in the meantime.  It emphasizes reduction of technology time, and an increase of time social time spent face to face with real human beings (not surprising, considering the title of the chapter, I suppose).  I find it interesting, though, that we've been saying that the majority of the book seems to be aimed at immigrants, and yet the sort of self-help chapter is obviously aimed at natives.  I guess that'd be because our parents' generation can't possibly be technology dependent.  This is a stereotype that is present in quite a few places, including advertising!  Check out this Toyota commercial:

Honestly, I love this commercial.  I think it's hilarious.  But at the same time, it paints the natives in a very negative light.  The daughter is spacey, unable to complete reading an entire article, and chooses to spend an absolutely gorgeous day indoors.  The parents are active, social, physically fit, and happy.  This is part of a series of commercials that run in this vein.  The young adults are at home by themselves while their parents go out partying and having fun.

I think, perhaps, that I was not the right person to review this chapter, mainly because I find the tone of the book to be largely antagonistic and biased.  The insinuation that college students need to be provided with classes to learn how to do laundry seems extreme.  If I didn't teach my child to be at least partially self-sufficient by the time she went to college, I would not count myself with the successful parents.  However, there are a couple of charts and exercises on building empathy, self-esteem, and assertiveness that could be helpful either in a classroom setting or in a parenting situation.  There is always something useful to be found!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

iBrain Chapter 6 -questionnaires, surveys, battery,

Chapter 6 was a simple read. I found myself analyzing my kids, wife, friends and especially my gadget addicted mother through the questionnaires. I think she's in trouble. I don't know what she would do without her laptop, smart phone, blue tooth, CNN with streaming bar, Direct TV etc. I specifically don't have a generator because I appreciate random times of the year when we are forced to disconnect.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

i five

Gary Small is no Daniel Pink.  When I read Pink’s Drive, I agreed with the greater part of it and it changed the way I teach.  iBrain is not having the same effect on me.  I know sources are documented, in a way heretofore unseen by me, in the back of the book, but I really have a hard time accepting much of what is being said.  I agree that technology is changing our society and our way of interacting and getting stuff done, but I am just not impressed with much of what is being said.  

I, too, had to go and see how the “Ten Most Popular Websites” had changed from 2007 to today and I was not surprised that there was a lot of movement.  Blogger and Twitter were new entries and eBay had succumbed to Amazon.  Not surprising really.  

I thought the section on the differences in men and women made men sound like they used the Internet for more serious matters, while women were more social.  Fractured Families just seemed to be a family making poor choices.  I could see a marital split coming if that family didn’t start spending more quality time together.  I would not cook a great meal and accept my spouse not sitting down with the family to eat it.  But I will grant you that my spouse and I drink our morning coffee with separate machines to check mail and news in the morning first thing.  Each to their own I guess.  I am glad we are getting this book out of the way first!

iBrain Chapter 5 - Friends, Guns and Money

Chapter 5 seemed to obvious. I'm also taking a class on Intergovernmental Relations. Readings for that class explored the loss of tax revenues by various levels of government due to on-line shopping. While this may sound good to the private citizens, it has a cumulative affect spread out over the entire population of a jurisdiction and the course of year that can reap havoc on public budgets. It made me, for the first time, start questioning some of the "free web" ideas. I also heard on radio financial programing that Google is facing some challenges monetizing some of their newer features and applications. They company has great ideas but there is a fundamental economic strategy to keep producing new products as long as marginal revenues are greater or equal than the marginal costs of that product, if new products are costing more than they generate, there is no incentive to keep them in place.

Monday, July 18, 2011

iBrain Chapter 5 : High Tech Culture

From what I pulled out, this chapter is Dr. Small and Gigi Vorgan describing in detail how technology is either destroying families and the next generation or setting the world for a global economic meltdown. That was, at least to me, the meat of this chapter. Dr. Small does list some interesting tables on the most popular websites and search queries from 2007. I really had a chuckle seeing Facebook FAR behind MySpace, however given the year this is totally correct. Facebook wasn't allowing users without a college email address to create profiles. I did a little bit of research, and I stress little (like 2 minutes) finding the list for 2010 and another minute or so to find a side-by-side for 2009 and 2010. So behold....the top ten websites of 2009 versus 2010!

What I first take away from this list and the list given by Dr. Small is the rise and fall of a social media site. Forward this list three to four years in the future and there may be another social media site (think Google+ ?) rising from the ashes of Facebook...hmm.

I do like how Dr. Small has set up the foundations of the electronic marketplace and how it is changing the way we do business. More often than not, I buy things online simply for the ease of not having to  be faced with the "oh we're sold out" when I get to the store. One example that really hit home is the roll of film versus digital prints. Erin just went through almost a year of photos on our computer to create a folder to send to Wal-Mart to print for an album. We do this from time to time so we can still have them when the inevitable hard drive failure occurs and we potentially lose the files. If we had had Maddy even 10 years ago we would have spent much more time and money developing an entire roll of film that may have been blurry, or had a finger over the lens. Now we can simply delete the bad ones or leave them in the digital realm.

I don't really agree with the fractured family story on pages 93 and 94. It sounds to me that the family never had a set dinner routine, but now we can blame technology for it. Throughout this book so far Dr. Small has given us examples of things that weren't working to begin with, and now we can throw technology to the wolves because that has to be what's making this not work! The family on pages 93 and 94 needed to have dinner time and routine set long before this story happened. Time limits for technology and/or a set time when the technology can be accessed. I've seen many, well not many because I'm only at the beginning of year five of teaching, but enough students who have parents that have a handle on technology and have rules in place for family time. On the other hand I've seen some kids that rule the roost and have nothing to do with family time because to be very frank, family time doesn't exist for them.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

iBrain Chapter 4 ADHD and Beyond

Being a father, former special education teacher, and regular education teacher, I really appreciated this chapter. Small introduces the chapter with an anecdotal scene of our regular "bombardment of technology" - iPods, T.V. with Scrolling Bars on the bottom of the Screen, Computer with multiple windows in action, etc. Many consider this to be multi-tasking. However, at question is the quality of the task performance being done. At a Discovery Education workshop earlier in the spring, one discussion we had was about the differences between "Multi-Switching" and "Multi-Tasking". From my observations, I see students do more "Multi-Switching". Small goes on in the chapter to provide the DSM-IV criteria for ADHD. For the past 10 years, especially since being in education, I have had various criticisms of this diagnostic method. First of all, it is subjective and based on rating scales provided to Parents and Teachers. There is no blood test or other objective technique. Second, unlike other disorders, ADHD does not cross contexts very well. Individuals with Down Syndrome, Arthritis, Crones Disease, Multiple Sclerosis, or Turrets don't cease having these conditions when they are playing soccer, engaged in a video game, talking with a friend on the phone, working on their Mustang (ha!! :) ). Not the case with ADHD - where symptoms pop up in specific contexts, often non-preferred, while in other contexts, the symptoms are non-existent. Small provides some evidence to suggest that technology impacts parts of the brain that link to ADHD through over stimulation. While some stimulation/arousal is necessary for general function, technology can become "maladaptive".

I didn't take particular interest in the section of Indigo children. Again, this seems to be a case by case scenario. I did however find the section on Autism very interesting. I have seen similarities within my own kids. As my oldest is more engrossed in television on a given day, the weaker his social skills become - ceases to verbally communicate, doesn't participate in group/family meals, becomes easily irritable, fixates on programming. However, my wife and I try to take our kids camping/hiking a few times during the summer. On these 2 or 3 day adventures, I'm glad to say my son is completely different. He is social, helpful, part of the group, involved in conversation, makes eye contact and, my favorite part, will put himself to bed [in the tent]. This is also true on days when his exposure to television or video games has been limited. In this way, I can see how Technology is like an amphetamine. When we are on it, it stimulates portions of our brain. We like that feeling and so we don't want to leave that "high". The social world around becomes secondary. I'm not all in that technology causes Autism Spectrum Disorders, but I do see the correlation between anti or non-social behaviors. Correlation doesn't necessarily mean cause and effect, and I'm quite certain, if I took an Autistic child camping, he would continue to show typical symptoms. That being said, I think Small addressed one of the best treatments for initial interventions - "Turn off the computer [or television, Xbox, iPad, etc] and go outside].

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Scheduling Posts

Kate discovered and I thought I would share it.  Knowing that I was going to be out of touch while visiting my Dad, I posted and set the schedule date. However, if you post something with a scheduled date for publishing, then edit it, you need to re-publish it. Saving isn't good enough.


Once you pass the scheduled date, you can not publish until you change the date into the future.

iBrain Chapter 3

In Chapter 3, we get an explanation of how pleasurable activities cause the release of dopamine. Dopamine creates a sense of pleasure and well-being that the anterior cingulate, the part of our brain that controls decision making and reason, is challenged to subdue. For some, the desire for that sense of pleasure overwhelms our ability to think rationally or take charge of our lives. Dr. Small offers a rubric for detecting internet addiction disorder then goes on to describe how people become addicted to email, virtual gaming, online porn, gambling and online shopping.

The digital addiction pattern is no different than addictions we have long known about. Addictions are about avoiding some part of reality. The difference is that you can get more of it faster (email), access it easier (porn) and spend it quicker (gambling and online shopping) with an anonymity that makes detection and intervention less likely.

This chapter ends with the promise of more input to help you determine whether you suffer an addiction or perhaps just spend to much time on the internet.

I know from personal experience and observations of students that the allure of the internet, or the applications on the internet, can be difficult to overcome. I feel that one of our many jobs as teachers is to help develop the motivation that keeps students on task because, internet or not, we humans seem to find a way to distract ourselves from what we should be doing.

On the other hand, addiction is a strong word. I know people that are addicted to various things and I have not witnessed internet use that rises to that level. Perhaps I am naive, but I found this chapter to be somewhat alarmist.  In addition, I found the author's reference to newspaper articles and other non-peer reviewed sources less than convincing. This chapter is full of these references.

Here is one example from his notes:
In China, where an estimated two million youths are addicted to the Internet, a boot camp for Web addicts has successfully treated thousands. Chinese boot camps tackle Internet addiction. International Herald Tribune. March 12, 2007, 

My takeaway idea is this. I know this book is about balance. So how can we use the students' desire to avoid reality (that is the heart of addiction) to attract students to learning?

Monday, July 11, 2011


Technology addiction is scary.  It is scary because it is real; young people don’t see or realize it, and if caregivers aren’t aware of the existence of the problem, it can become a bigger problem.  I read something once that referred to checking your e-mail and facebook even before your morning coffee.  I am guilty of that!  But I can also live without it.  We went to camp for a couple of days with no power, phone or internet and I loved it.  I never even thought about anything but the sun and the lake.  But I do understand the lure of connectedness.  

One thing this chapter said to me was that we need to think twice about kids and laptops in Maine.  When we checked the histories of our students laptops one year, kids were on them at midnight or later and it was more facebook or games than anything else.  I think what that says to me  is that we need to do more to educate the parents of the students so they will keep an eye on usage times.  I told a friend of mine who had a student with a laptop that it was OK to make her leave it downstairs after 8 or 9 so she wasn’t on it all night.  Maybe parents just need to know?

I know that doesn’t solve the problem as adults are equally addicted, but for me, right now, my main focus in the students.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

You learn something everyday!

I just figured out that not only can you upload multiple pictures to a  Picassa Web Album, BUT you can do videos as well.   This will change you a HUGE amount of time.  So you can just upload a whole set of pics/videos and walk away.  Then just link the album to your blog!

You could have albums already linked so you only do this once then just upload it.

For example, Mike and Mrs. M  can give their parents a web based photo album.  It can sit at the grandparents house a link to a Web album so as they baby grows they just upload latest pic to that album and grammy and grandpa see pics automatically.

* I will be trying out the new wi-fi enabled SD cards that automatically connect to a web album... so you won't even need to upload them they will automatically do it on their own.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Who am I....I'm an ADULT Darn it!!

I thought for many years that my advantage in the High School was that I was closer in age to the students and could better relater to their world. I've slowly started to realize this is not true. I am a Digital Immigrant - I remember going through school when access to computers was limited, most assignments were handwritten, except for final draft of major papers. The Library catalog, reference books magazine/journal databases and the Librarian herself were the primary research sources. But as I read chapter 2 of iBrain, I realized that I'm a hybrid. I grew up in the video game world and as I was reading, I was listening to NPR programing, participating in an online virtual world game, and making lunch - multi-tasking - I can quit if I want to!!! So, yes, I've been hooked on technology for many years, despite immigrant status and my own professed Luddite attitudes.

iBrain Chapter 2

 Digital Natives Vs. Digital Immigrants
It Doesn't Have to be a Battle

Chapter 2 of iBrain lays out a comparison of digital natives and digital immigrants and then talks about how the two groups might come together. Let's start with digital natives.


Respond faster, but encode differently
Shorter attention spans
1/3 watch TV while using other media
Multi-Task almost constantly
Technology makes the world shrink for them
Too little face to face communications can cause circuits to atrophy and too much can overwhelm the circuits
They use screens 8 hours and 35 minutes a day - meeting the clinical criteria for pathological internet use thereby lowering their academic achievement and interfering with their social lives (not to mention their physical health)

Adolescent specific information:

Adolescents are/should be learning how to be empathetic and moving from concrete to abstract.
Wired to be selfish
As they age they develop the ability to delay gratification, consider others' feelings, put things in perspective and realize danger in a situation. Technology stunts this development.
They crave new technology
Playing video games 2-7 hours a day tuns off the frontal lobes - even when not playing. Makes them devoid of social skills, aggressive and desensitized to violence. (Limited amount of video gaming may enrich minds and improve cognitive performance, pattern recognition, systematic thinking and executive skills)


Learn methodically - one thing at a time
Fearful of new technology
22% of Americans have never use the internet or email (WHOA!)
Difficulty to hold information in their mind
Can't process information quickly
More effective in seeing the big picture (place information into a context)
Midlife brain goes from dial-up to DSL
2 sides of brain come together - personality mellows


Digital natives need to work on their interpersonal skills, immigrant needs to work on technology. Together they could be powerful.


I found this chapter to be one of the most interesting of the book. It explained a lot in terms of why kids and even adults that I know in their early 20's are so different from me. I am on the cusp of this movement. Since I was born in 1981 technically I am classified as a digital native, but in some ways I also feel like I can be an immigrant because it drives me crazy when kids are texting each other constantly or updating their Facebook status with their everyday minutia. Knowing that there is science that actually shows that the screen time is stunting their abilities to interact in socially appropriate ways makes so much sense, but it is also really scary because we are contributing to that 8.5 hours of screen time a day. The skills that are being stunted by this use are more important to me than others that we teach in our content classes. Who is going to make a better citizen - someone that can find the square root of a number or someone that can realize danger in a situation and make a decision accordingly? I can see and have seen how technology can assist in student learning and achievement but I think we all need to be wary of how we are using it and how much we are using it. If you think about the big picture and preparing students for the working world - I would argue that interpersonal skills are far more important than technological ones.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hello my name is Keith and I have CPA

Continuous Partial Attention...... what did everyone think of this? I found it very true of my students riding with me from STI with their phones on Texting while having a complete conversation with me as they listened to their ipods earbud in the other ear.

Could be worse I could have TBBO?
anyone want to guess what this is?


or digital... squirrel!

Watch how people use tools to post....

You can see how Jesse is using TAGGING in his post.

Tagging allows you to search and find content within a blog or webpage.

If you tag your post then you can jump right to points as you blog gets larger.

Newest thing on internet is Tagging Photos... so as stuff is uploaded you know your picture went up.

 has a feature that will auto tag your pictures once you have labeled a person's face in the system.

Also... if go into the post setting you can see how some are using the date/scheduling feature to pre set post so they will go online when needed.  You can pre set your class...

* be careful of links, videos, pictures  I tend to download the content rather then just linking in case content changes or disappears

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Luddites on Parade

I'm not sure how we are supposed to do this, but I just finished iBrain Chapter 1 and want to get it out there. Sorry if I'm stepping on anyone's toes. Frankly, as a concerned "Digital Immigrant and " I found the chapter to be very interesting and confirmed some of the observations that I have had in class regarding the "digital natives". Its good to know that there is researched positive affects of the digital era. When people debate evolution vs creationism, what gets lost in the conversation is the idea that evolution continues...there is no stopping point. So naturally the idea that our environmental inputs - digital age - would have an impact on our neural wiring. I am very concerned about our social skills. My wife signed me up a few months ago for Facebook. Its great and nice, but I still miss in person contact. My parents moved here in 1986 and I remember people always stopping by or vice versa. That doesn't happen anymore. Even though I live in the town I grew up in, I rarely have people stop by for a beer and conversation and my wife and I don't reciprocate. My students don't wait. They barge into conversations with other people to inject their own unrelated requests or statements. These are interpersonal skills that are being lost. I believe that some of this behavior comes from the "chatting" with multiple people, each in their own don't have to be polite in that environment. I also see the continuous partial attention. It becomes additive for the kids. They have to know whats going on and have 30 things going on. Parents then ask about ADHD......Over the holiday, I'm planning on going camping, somewhere with my family. I appreciate this time with, almost, mandatory disconnection from the digital world.

iBrain Chapter 1

   Because of how we are using our brains, our brains are changing, evolving.  I wonder if this is really new or has been going on forever we can just  measure it now?   When people first learned to type it must have taken a different brainset.  I know that I don't even think about the spelling of the words, they just seem to flow off my fingers.  That must be a different brain connection.  
   There are a couple of ways our brains are changing that I don’t think are so great.  Mind you, I am a big believer in “different is different, it isn’t better or worse; it’s just different.”  American Field Service says this about other cultures all the time.  And it does apply to about everything.  
    Except, the more time we spend on computers, time spent with real people declines.  Our students may interact more, virtually, than they do fact to face.  What is that going to do to social skills that many of them already lack with busy working parents.  Another facet I didn’t like was that “studies show that fewer young adults read books for pleasure now than in any generation before them”(3).  Are we going to have to change how and what we teach because of that?  Everyone will still need to learn to read, but I hope they continue to learn the pleasure of a really good piece of fiction.  
    Hopefully, even if they aren’t reading analog media, they will be reading digitally.  There is a prediction “that the future of news will be in the electronic digital media rather than the traditional print or television forms”.(4)  Even though this book was only published a year ago, in 2009, I think that is already happening.  
    Brains format in the younger years and as our brains grew, they developed connections to send and receive signals. This book says that at age two, our brains max out.  And that we “cannot function efficiently with too much information.”  I found that a bit hard to believe as we don’t use much of our brain.  I’ll have to think about that.  
    Bottom line, the authors are saying that technology is changing how our brains work and make connections.  Peripheral vision is improving, as well as cognitive ability and multitasking skills.  They also say we need to make sure we don’t overwhelm our brains with technology, and think about how best to train our brains with the technology.  
    It’s a bit hard to see, after only reading the first chapter, exactly where this book is going.  While I may not like or agree with everything in this chapter, we aren’t going to retreat from technological developments and it is better to be informed so we can decide the best course of actions for our students and our children.  I read a book for another class, “Last Child in the Woods” and it talked about nature deficit disorder, a lack of exposure to the natural world as a result of so much time spent in front of a screen.  I think we need to maintain a balance and have our student learn to use technology wisely, but not loose them selves, and their brains in it too much.  
I’m not positive what my “Hmmm....” is for this chapter.  I think the part that bothers me the most is that reading for pleasure is declining.  When I connect that to children spending less time outside, I think that is something we really need to be aware of.  For me, reading a really good book, (defined as one I really enjoy), is one of life’s great pleasures.  So in a long walk in the woods.  I don’t want my students to not have an opportunity to enjoy those as well, just because they spend so much time with a technological brain.