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0. Introduction 1. What is it? 2. Why do we use it? 3. Where does it come from? 4. How does it work? 5. How does it change? 6. How does it change us? 7. How do we change it? 8. What are its costs & benefits? 9. How do we evaluate it?

 

0. Introduction
1. What is it?
2. Why do we use it?
3. Where does it come from?
4. How does it work?
5. How does it change?
6. How does it change us?
7. How do we change it?
8. What are its costs & benefits?
9. How do we evaluate it?

 

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California Content Standards

 

 

1. What is it?

Lesson

What is technology?  Much more than computers, cell phones, and space ships.  Maybe it is every tool that extends our abilities.  Our first activity gives a simple, memorable example in the lever.  Other answers are possible: systems or information.  Some say "applied science," but our book gives reasons not to.

 

If we were trying to identify a new technology, what kinds of questions would be the most powerful?  Our second activity hides a familiar technology to let us practice asking those kinds of questions.

Hook stories

Pole vault over the moon

Hawaiian bobtail squid & diarrhea

Building computers with stone tools.

Activities

Lever shows that something as simple as a strong board and a block can extend our abilities by conferring mechanical advantage (Archimedes: "Give me a lever long enough and someplace to stand, and I will move the earth.")

 

20 Questions is like a game show in which groups of students try to guess a hidden technology.  A student volunteers to view it and answer only yes-or-no questions.  The winning group sends the next volunteer.  Recognizing which questions are the most powerful can be applied  to more complex problems.

Content Standards (click for details)

English-Language Arts

Grade 5 Reading 1.4

Grade 7 Reading 1.2

History - Social Science

Grade 6 World History & Geography: Ancient Civilizations 6.1.1

Grade 7 World History & Geography: Medieval & Early Modern Times 7.3.5

Grade 11 US History & Geography: Continuity & Change in the 20th Century 11.5.7

Mathematics

Grade 8 Geometry 1.0

Grades 5 - 7 Mathematical Reasoning 2.2

Science

Grade 5 Investigation & Experimentation 6a

Grade 7 Life Science 6i

 

 2010 KnowledgeContext

 

Teaching Young People to Think About Technology