1 - No laptop use for anything other than class work.
2 - Spy on their classmates' screens and report truthfully on what they see.
Now, I'm not sure what your first reaction is to reading those two pledges, but mine wasn't positive. (Before I go further, I'd like to point out that the comments posted by readers are quite an interesting read, too.) My first thought was, 'He doesn't get it'. Then I read on to see what his reasoning would be for his classroom rules:
By recruiting this new breed of screen snitches, Kim hopes to make digital distraction so socially awkward that students will close forbidden windows — Facebook, email, Sikh field hockey matches — and plug into class.So again I react, "Why is Facebook 'forbidden'"? I wonder what the reasons behind students tuning out and watching sports matches are? Does Prof Kim need to focus more on what he's doing -or not doing- rather than what his students are doing, or should be doing?
Kicking students out of your classroom for looking at something deemed 'improper' on their laptop screen seems to me counter-productive. I consider that Kim could instead be more engaging himself. Maybe he could use some creativity and have the students actively use Facebook, email, Twitter and Pinterest to expand their learning experience with digital tools they've come to love.
Could there be one class online, one class offline? Would it work better if the first 45 minutes of the class occur with laptops closed and students knowing that they can open and use laptops productively for the following 60 minutes of class time? I'm thinking there has to be better solutions than spying, snitching and expulsion from the lecture hall.
Prof Kim rightly asserts:
There’s not an ounce of scientific evidence that students can actually multi-task and learn.I personally do not feel, however, that the issue here is of multi-tasking and whether it inhibits learning or not. I believe we cannot fight the digital wave that is crashing down upon us daily nor do it in a way that is not going to turn many away from learning. There are ways to integrate digital technology into classrooms successfully, so let's find those ways, create new ones and keep the learners in their seats -engaged, excited and passionate. If we don't, then more comments like 'steboy' will be made:
Saying we should sit straight and pay attention but not take the care to find out if we're going to want to be there is double talk. This issue seems personal to you, are you a bad teacher? Because I pay attention to the good ones.Let me know your take on this article and Prof Kim's approach in the comments below.