As someone who does not teach a subject that falls cleanly into the main content areas of English and language arts, foreign and second language, math and science, social studies, art and music, or physical and health education, I come across several obstacles toward technology integration. In my experience, financial literacy falls somewhere along the lines of a combining math, science, and social studies. Being a hybrid of those content areas I feel that it shares a couple of their challenges in technology integration.  Roblyer and Doering  (2012), note that the vast amount of easily accessible internet information can modify the traditional trust of a student teacher relationship which leads to problems delivering social studies content. I experience this first hand teaching financial literacy due to the prevalence of financial websites on the internet spouting various opinions, which may or may not always be factually based. My students will often try to contradict certain points I may be making during the Q&A portion of my presentation. What I have found as a solution to this is including my sources for information in presentations slides or documents, and to encourage students to further look at those sources themselves when in doubt. If they have facts to back things up I encourage them to share an opposing point of view but only if they have something to back it up. It is important they learn to research rather than just go off what they heard or read on the internet being that literally anyone can upload content these days.

In the area of science and math, some organizations argue and some studies show that computer simulations cannot substitute for real life experiments (Roblyer & Doering, 2012). This is something I have seen firsthand and stress to my students when using financial simulations like Investopedia. No matter how accurate a simulation is it will always be just that, a simulation. Once they actually start using real money for investing, savings plans, business plans or whatever might have been previously simulated, there are going to be new unforeseen consequences they may not be ready for. To help them plan for this I am vigilant to include disclaimers whenever I facilitate any type of money simulation activity. I have to stress up front and constantly reiterate that what is learned in the virtual world does not transfer 100% to the real world.

Roblyer, M. D., & Doering, A. (2012). Integrating educational technology into teaching. (6th ed.). Pearson     Education Inc.

11/19/2012 11:57:03 am

Forrest,I like how you focused on financial literacy. I like your emphasis on research (probably because I am an ELA teacher). I have often wondered about simulations. Obviously, they do not come into play that often for me! It would seem something is better than nothing for sure. I was wondering if you have any time constraint issues or access issues? These two barriers came up in my research. I focused on them as they are an issue at my school. Thanks for sharing your post. Nona


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