This morning I went to a bi-weekly tech meeting/Apple circle jerk and heard the news that an Auburn, Maine elementary school is getting all of their kindergartners iPad 2s. Then, after talking with another friend this morning, I learned that the Denver School of Science and Technology is getting rid of all of their art teachers. Yes. I realize that nowhere in the school’s name does it mention art, but still. Come on.
Maybe I’m the only one who feels this way, but I feel like children may be missing vital arts experience in schools in exchange for more and more technology in the curriculum.
After writing that sentence, I think I just uttered my generation’s “walking uphill to school both ways” clause.
For realsies though, while I think it’s great that 20 kindergartners will get to smudge up an iPad for a year (if those things can even withstand the abuse of a 6 year old for an entire year), I do wonder what programs got passed over for this to become a reality. Did the music program get passed over for new sheet music once again? Did the art class get denied its request for better easels? Did other important arts programs get passed over yet again so that children that are at an age when they can barely write can get technology that some adults lack the dexterity to control?
Think what you want, but the arts played such a critical role in my development that the thought of these departments getting passed over yet again, or even completely eliminated so that schools can get kids the latest and greatest tech (that will just be outdated in a year anyway) really, really pisses me off.
I’m no Luddite, but goddammit, can we please keep the arts grounded in the real world instead of virtual space?