I’m a fan of Vicki Davis. I think that she is generally very practical. She seems to really work with real kids, in real classrooms. She also seems to have a real life. However, a recent post of hers got me to thinking. The post was about 11 ESSENTIAL EDTECH ACTION STEPS FOR BACK TO SCHOOL. In the post, she mentions several tools that she (and, in some cases, her students) use. Which then lead to my wondering just how many tools she (and her students) use.

Now this matters to me because I work with a wide variety of teachers, parents and students. One of the frustrations that parents end up expressing is how many different sites and places that their kids have to go to complete assignments. Some of these parents express how frustrated their kids are at not being able be successful. Some of these kids are special needs.

So, here a quick list of the tools from that post:

Now, let me be fair. Some of these are things that a user would be interested in. Some are choices (either this or that). But, if you are not a techie, this is overwhelming.

Then I read a bit farther down. There is a link to the “163 tools Superhandout!”.

11 Essential EdTech Action Steps for Back to School 2016-07-30 15-22-11

163 tools. I’m afraid that this leads to the habit and belief that one must check out and use all of these tools. I’d much prefer teachers to learn a few really powerful tools at a deep level than to dally around with 163 tools.

163 tools. I still can’t get over that. We already know about the paradox of choice. I believe that this is part of the reason that technology hasn’t had an even bigger impact on education. We need to focus on the how, the why and then the what.

Now I also know that as a blogger, we need to blog regularly. (I’m guilty of not blogging regularly. I blog when I truly have something to say, the time and the motivation. That certainly doesn’t help with popularity. Popular blogs post regularly.) Lots of bloggers want (need, should, etc) make money from blogs. Making money depends on sponsorships, ads and lots of posting.

Again, I’m not really being critical of Vicki Davis. I respect what she does and talks about. I think that she is important in keeping the conversation going. I just want to put forth that sometimes quality is the most important feature. I hope that teachers will pick a couple of tools (preferably school-wide) that will help students learn and be successful.

How many tools will your students use this year?