The Atlantic

The Futile Resistance Against Classroom Tech

Critics of laptops in schools aren’t prepared for the future of technology.
Source: Eric Thayer / Reuters

Imagine a classroom in the not-too-distant future. Textbooks, slideshows, and notes all interface neatly with devices that once called “phones” and “laptops”—but now those learning materials proliferate through desks, walls, clothes, jewelry, glasses, and maybe even tattooes or contact lenses. The teacher, trained to teach in the 2010s, wants to say, “close your laptops and put away your phones.” But when the phone is embedded in a fingernail, what can a teacher do?

Roughly the same argument about laptops in the classroom for at least the last five years. The argument against laptops in the classroom goes something like this: First, laptops distract people; second, and

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