We’re excited to introduce a new series in our blog called “10 Questions with…” Each blog will feature Education Technology influencers, movers and shakers in a candid 10 question interview. We hope to provide insight into how the industry of technology in the classroom is changing, how they are making it happen and why it’s beneficial to both students and teachers to utilize it.
First up, Matt Miller! He’s the author of Ditch That Textbook, a Google-Certified Innovator and named one of the top 10 influencers in education technology and eLearning worldwide!
1) Who are you?
My name is Matt Miller. I’m the author of the book, “Ditch That Textbook,” and the blog by the same name. I taught in the classroom for more than a decade and am currently creating resources and providing professional development for teachers all over the United States.
2) Why is technology important to you?
Technology in and of itself isn’t as important to me as what it can do in the hands of students. Technology is at its most powerful when it is transforming student learning. We reduce it to nothing more than an expensive pencil if we only use it to do what we could do with paper and pencil before.
3) Why is it important to have technology in the classroom?
Technology is going to be an embedded part of students’ lives in the future. (In fact, it already is in many ways.) They’re going to use it sometimes on a minute-by-minute basis, and it’s going to cross over from their personal to professional lives constantly. We need to prepare them for that world, and we can by letting them use the tools that will best help them accomplish their goals.
4) Favorite piece of technology?
For instruction in the classroom? It has to be a Chromebook. For the price, the capabilities and the speed of use, I think the Chromebook is hands-down the best choice for most 1:1 environments.
5) Favorite subject when you were in school?
I was a journalism major in college before becoming a teacher, so I loved my newspaper and yearbook classes!
6) Favorite food?
It’s hard to beat my wife’s lasagna.
7) Best vacation you ever took and why?
My best vacations weren’t traditional vacations but mission trips … to Uruguay and to Mexico. We worked with kids in vacation Bible schools. The impact on their lives — as well as the cultural lessons — were priceless.
8) How do you like to learn?
The best way for me is to learn hands-on and on-demand. When I tackle a new project, I like to gather whatever information I’ll need for the job and then get started. I also like to read — online, in books, etc. — and listen to podcasts.
9) Favorite sport/sports team or TV show?
I love watching NFL football and, being from Indiana, am a huge Indianapolis Colts fan.
10) How and why is technology changing the world?
It’s making information available to anyone. It’s reimagining communication by making it face-to-face, global and instant. It’s giving a voice and a platform to anyone. It’s making the previously inconceivable into the imminently possible.