If the horse taken to the water does not want to drink, the
e-pioneer does not first blame the horse.
“You can take a horse to water but you can’t make it drink.” This means that you can open the door of possibilities to people but you can’t force them to make use of the opportunities.
This is also true of technology provided to schools. You may install computers and educational software in carefully prepared computer rooms, followed by training sessions for all teachers in the school. What you can’t do is to force teachers to use technology for teaching and learning.
Why are so many horses reluctant to drink? (The analogy of horses is not altogether inappropriate in an education context – many educators are indeed industrious work horses.)
The e-pioneer understands the following reasons:
Being workhorses, teachers are too tired to drink. The burden of administrative demands placed upon them by the bureaucracy often leaves them with little energy to try new things.
Perhaps some horses are not thirsty. In spite of training they may still not understand the benefits of technology as a teaching tool.
Could it be that the water is inaccessible to the horse? The computer room can’t be used if the schedule is full. Unreliable technology is likewise a barrier to accessing it.
Before blaming a horse, the e-pioneer must address these obstacles.
Click here for more food for thought for e-pioneers.