Sunday, February 25, 2007

If you build it....

will they come?

Because technology is SO expensive to implement the question of "is it worth it" often arises.

...when everything is in place... the tools, the resources, the equipment, the reliability, the support... is it worth it? Does something magical happen in the classroom?

Having spent the last few months as a coach for teachers in a one-to-one setting, I can tell you that the answer to this is a resounding YES...

Want to see magic, spent a day in an English class where kids have voice...they use blogs and threaded discussion boards. They take notes in the "notebook" version of word. On a Friday afternoon they spend 10th period bluetoothing plans in preparation for the weekend, taking notes, learning how to access their files from the G: so they can be prepared to present on Wednesday...collaboration, presentation, research...

Want to see magic, watch a chemistry classes revising their labs using subetha edit. A physics class "mapping the wireless access points in the hs by sending information back to their classroom using the same program...
collaboration, analysis, revision.

Want to see magic, watch RobTV...the weekly broadcast (produced even without a TV studio...) simply an enthusiastic librarian and elementary students who just want their voices to be heard

Want to see magic...what about the class relating fictional literature about an autistic child The Curious Incident of the Dog at Nighttime autistic kids to the true story of an autistic woman.

And speaking of magical is seeing the looks on the faces of a class of autistic students when they get to watch the "movies" they made explaining how a simple machine they learned about works

If you build it...they WILL come...

There IS magic is building these types of learning experiences for children...but it is important that the building blocks: tools, resources, equipment, infrastucture and support provide a solid foundation.

1 comment:

  1. I read 'Curious' on a plane back to the UK just after my two boys had been diagnosed as autistic. I love Mark Haddon's style [currently reading A Spot of Bother - not for children]
    I think that was a great choice of book for younsters as they are the generation that are going to be growing up with others on the spectrum as no other generation has experienced.
    Thanks for your foresight.
    Best wishes