The other day I received my copy of the new Milady Standard Esthetics textbook. Side note… it is amazing! When it arrived at my house, my 6-year-old niece Hayden was here, and she asked me what was in the box.
Here is our conversation.
Hayden: What’s that?
Me: It’s a textbook.
Hayden: With a confused look on her face What do you mean textbook? She thought about it for a minute and said… Is it a book that will send a text to you?
I just had to laugh. Then I thought about it. From her point of view, if something had the word “text” in it, it meant that she would be receiving a message on a phone. And then it hit me… that is all she has ever known. She is in school. Her mother is in college and does homework all the time, but neither one of them have a physical textbook they learn from. Everything that Hayden knows about school and learning is related to something digital. You know I still find my iPhone and my iPad an impressive tool. Hayden doesn’t think they are amazing at all, because again, that is all she has ever known.
Recently we posted a question on the Milady Instructor Facebook group asking if educators preferred hard copy books or digital books. There were people on both sides of the issue, some of them very passionate about it.
There were many educators who raved about how awesome it was to use digital tools such as Milady’s MindTap and e-books to help their students learn.
On the other hand, there were educators who felt that hard copy was the only way to learn. And I get it. I like a physical copy of something when I am learning. I like to touch it, I like to highlight, I like to make notes. But that is what works for me and it isn’t the only way to go.
Keep in mind, that eBooks have features such as highlighting, notes and bookmarks, just like the hard copy. eBooks do more! eBooks have additional features such as Read Speak, meaning it will read the content to you!
What it comes down to is being aware of how your students learn best. Each passing year, you are going to have more and more students arrive in your schools who have only used tablets, computers and eBooks in their education. We must be able to adapt to that or we are going to get left behind.
One thing I do want to make clear, and that is the fact that the educator is still needed and an important part of education. Just because new digital tools such as MindTap are becoming more mainstream, it doesn’t mean that you will be replaced. Think of it this way, technology is just a new teaching method for us to use. No different than when we switched from overheads projectors to PowerPoints, or switched from VHS tapes to DVDs, or even going from chalkboards to smartboards. It is just a new tool. How you teach using that new tool is what is important.