Wednesday, September 26, 2012

I applaud Glastonbury for providing incoming freshmen with iPads and especially the State of Maine for having the foresight to provide laptops in 2002 to middle school students. {Marteka, Peter (Sept. 26, 2012) Teaching Tools. Hartford Courant.)}These technologies do not guarantee that students will improve their achievement scores. What will be realized is a tool that has the potential to make instruction and learning more efficient at a lowered cost.

Student research can be accomplished at one’s desk at school or elsewhere with the press of a key when a computer (tablets, laptops or desktops) has access to the internet. There will be no need to run to the library.

Word processing simplifies the editing of compositions making writing more productive and enjoyable.

Instruction can be performed via a computer making delivery or review of lessons readily available at school and at home or wherever the student happens to be located.

Students will have access to multiple sources of computer delivered instruction beyond what may be provided by the school district. Many of these sources will be free (e.g. Khan Learning Academy, Word Dynamo, etc.).

Textbooks can be delivered, stored and read on computers. Students will no longer have to lug heavy books in backpacks.

The cost of textbooks will be reduced.

Building space will become more available when physical books are no longer needed. Libraries will be reduced in size as books become stored and delivered electronically.

The cost of technology will trend downward, especially when school districts use the bidding process when making large hardware purchases. To encourage competition, districts should avoid the temptation to limit purchases to one manufacturer.

1 comment:

  1. You have made excellent points, Ron, as always. Interestingly, some of the free internet-delivered instruction, like Khan Academy, can be much more effective than in-classroom instruction.