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Handling AI in the Classroom: AI Ethics for Education

Does Artificial Intelligence bring up more questions than it can answer? How do we handle it responsibly and wisely in our classrooms? Vicki Davis has answers and encouragement for teachers wondering about AI ethics.

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AI is something we didn't plan for and a lot of people didn't want, but it's here and it's not going away, so it's something we need to learn to handle. Just like the internet, AI is a place that can inhabit both good and evil, depending on how it's used. Our fear should not be AI, it should be AI without a Biblical worldview. AI is a tool.

AI is powerful. A car is powerful and we don't just put kids behind a car without training them first and discussing the dangers. We need to teach our children how to use AI and how to be careful with it in the same way.

AI is a tool that imitates humans and it's good at it. We need to remind our students that AI is an IT, not a she or he. We humans are God's image bearers and that sets us apart from AI. 

Vicki believes AI will be used to reach the world with the Gospel. Not just ChatGPT, but some of the translation services that exist can be used to spread the Good News.


If you do not have a school policy on AI, you are doing your students a disservice. We need to accept that AI is here. We have a window of opportunity to be the ones to introduce it to our students so we can provide guidelines.

MagicSchool AI is a recommended tool. Their website says, "Our platform respects the privacy of student and staff information with stringent security measures." 

There is a school that labels each assignment with a traffic light. Green means you can use AI if you cite and link to it, yellow means you can use AI with permission, and red means you can't use it. 


ELA teachers need to bring the writing process back into the classroom. It's too easy for students to plagiarize or use AI if the assignments are done at home and not in the classroom. Some teachers keep post-it notes to keep track of what step the child is on in the writing process and the teacher needs to approve the work at each step before allowing the student to go to the next step. 

AI detectors do not work. The kids who are strong writers can prompt AI to write the way they do. Kids who are weaker writers can ask AI to make some mistakes and then turn that in. The teacher needs to know the kids and their writing styles. It's almost impossible to prove a student has used AI and you can destroy your relationship with them by accusing them without proof.  

There is a way to use AI in the writing process. You can train your students to use AI for feedback on something they've already written. The students can give AI the rubric and ask if they have met the steps on the rubric. They still need to make sure the feedback is accurate. 


Students nationwide are doing more poorly on the nationwide math testing, but getting better math grades. If the students or parents use the app Photo Math, students are missing the process, only getting the product. Have a discussion with your students about the idea of "cheating yourself." 

It's time to get back to putting math problems on the boards (laminated poster boards can work for this) around the room with math problems that students need to solve. Teachers MUST be checking the process. We can no longer assign students to practice at home and trust that they will be doing it independently. If a student struggles with one problem, a teacher can use ChatGPT Pro to ask for 5 more similar problems to give the student more practice. 


God ordained beforehand the day we would be born. He knew our time in history would overlap with AI; He has equipped us for "such a time as this." 

Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis, the "Cool Cat Teacher" is a 22 year veteran educator teaching Computer Science and helping teachers integrate technology in their K-12 Classrooms. She blogs at the Cool Cat Teacher Blog and hosts the 10 Minute Teacher podcast and has won many awards and traveled the world encouraging teachers to reach every child using technology. She also writes Christian books including her newest books Every Scar a Miracle and the devotional Stay in the Boat along with some women in the "Red Ink Circle" authors group. 

Vicki is a resource for the moral and ethical use of technology and works for many leading technology companies for this work.

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The Herzog foundation believes that teachers are heartbeat of schools and the role models to our future leaders. In June, they will host the Making A Leap: Teacher Symposium at Wheaton College, Illinois to explore questions, concerns, and myths around Christian education. During the two-day symposium teachers, administrators, and graduates looking to go into Christian education will explore topics like Reclaiming Faith and Freedom in the Classroom, launching your own Christian school, and more. If you are thinking about making the leap into Christian education, this two day event is for you! Find out more at teach4theheart.com/leap.

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