You say leave my digital tools at home--don't bring them here where they'll be a distraction from my learning.
But Teacher-man, putting in my ear buds while I work helps me tune out all the noise.
You say that if I have my cell, I'll text answers to my friends.
But Teacher-man, I can cheat in a thousand other ways if I'm gonna cheat.
You say we don't have enough labs and computers in this school.
But Teacher-Man, I can look things up on this device if you'll just let me.
You say use a paper and a pencil. Revise and edit! Get that work done on time!
But Teacher-man, I can type, cut, paste, spell-check, post online and be finished while you're handwriting your first draft.
You say cameras have no place in school.
But Teacher-man, if you want me to be original and follow copyright, let me write a story with my own pix and vids.
You say leave my electronics out of this classroom.
But Teacher-man, I say get your old-school out of my way!
This letter piece sprang from a quick-write about voice, i.e. anger, compassion, and persuasion. I thought of it during the Quilt of Concern activity, too. I wrote a little about why we shouldn't blame technology for everything, like cheating and ADHD. I am a tech enthusiast (though I do not see it as a cure-all by any means.) The piece wasn't going anywhere but later when we talked about multi-genre writing I thought I'd try switching the commentary into a letter. I found it really fun because the subject is one I'm passionate about but I didn't want to write a diatribe against Luddites.
Obviously I was using voice, text conventions, repetition, etc. in an effort to make the main points quickly and without argument--kind of drive-by letter! I conferenced with some people outside of class about it--my sister and my mother. My mother thought it was fun while my sister sent me an article about how all the computers and search engines we use are rotting our brains. I did re-write this once and tweak the formatting a little, but I felt it should stand on its own without too much fuss, so I didn't want to keep experimenting on it. I also didn't have a mentor text for this: just a vague memory of a repetitive kind of poem I heard once.
I think one of the things I'll need to be aware of is that some children/writers will make themselves crazy trying to make a piece perfect; I want to be able to tell them it's okay to quit a piece. On the other hand, I'll need to pay close attention so they aren't stopping too early instead of revising, editing, and re-writing to make a piece better.