Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly being incorporated to nearly every aspect of our lives, and hundreds of Illinois schools are starting to utilize the technology in classrooms too, but is this a good thing?

Important Things to Know About Using  AI Technology

I use AI technology on a daily basis at work, but I'll be the first to admit that I have barely scraped the surface of understanding its capabilities. I primarily use it for help with writing and content ideas, but there are a couple of important things I learned about AI very quickly once I started using it.

  1. It gets information wrong a LOT.
  2. You have to be very specific in describing what you want from it.
  3. If you ask AI to create a picture including people and words, you can get some very WEIRD results. (the humans sometimes look very deformed and terrifying!)

All that being said, I think it's safe to say AI isn't going anywhere, so we all need to embrace and understand how to use it. Plus, the more we all use it the "smarter" it will get.


The Benefits of Using AI in Classrooms

AI technology exists to help us all work smarter, not harder. Teaching today's students how to use it effectively could be an important part of their education, and that is why many Illinois school districts will soon be adding it to their curriculums.

Rockford Public Schools just announced they will begin using an AI program called "Magic School" in classrooms this fall that will teach students how to prompt artificial intelligence programs in a meaningful and ethical way.

RPS 205 Director of Educational Technology Susan Uram told;

we have to teach kids to ask good questions and to know what they’re looking for in order to know whether what’s coming out is useful for them.

Magic School will help RPS students with tutoring and research, but that is where I believe the biggest possible problem stems from.

Disadvantages of Using AI in Classrooms

As I stated before, AI is pretty good at providing inaccurate information, so will today's students actually take the time to fact check the results?

Also, AI technology doesn't always source where the information it provides comes from, so plagiarism can be a real problem.

Finally, will teaching students how to effectively use artificial intelligence make them even more dependent on technology than they already are?

It's a tough decision, but in this case, I think the long-term pros of using AI in the classroom outweigh the cons. What do you think?

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