I am going to address people older than me for a little bit. I'm not a Luddite, but I sometimes envy people who grew up before we had so much technology. Yes, I know, I'm writing this on my blog. I'm also texting, watching the game on digital TV, and writing my graduate paper in another window. As much as I use all the gadgets and technology available to me, I am saturated in information and communication. We all are, but I don't really remember much before the Internet and cell phones.
I especially envy people who taught before e-mail. Does e-mail give more communication with parents and colleagues? Yes. Is it useful? Yes. BUT, it is too much. I literally get about 100 e-mails to my work account on an average work day. About 10 of them are a good use of e-mail and a good use of my time.
I had a parent e-mail me this year that she is deeply disappointed that I don't do more courtesy e-mails to remind parents of due dates. Due dates are all already on my website and sent home on paper copies.
I had another parent forward me a school e-mail and ask me about a date contained in the e-mail. They basically wanted me to send them the cliff notes of the e-mail.
I have parents e-mailing me to send them another copy of the homework, and actually excusing their child for not returning the next days homework because I didn't answer them within two hours.
I am guilty of a lazy technology addiction too. I have had a smartboard for just over a full year now, and I honestly don't know how to teach without it now.
I wish it could be as simple as pulling the plug for two months, so we could all refocus on what is important.