RE: [xmca] article: Seeing No Progress, Some Schools Drop Laptops

From: Hallam,Teresa A <thallam who-is-at>
Date: Sat May 05 2007 - 13:40:47 PDT

 Look at the the systematic failure to address the cultural norms and
beliefs by educators of the role of teachers, technology, and students.
Teachers see laptops as:
 "a distraction," "did not fit into lesson plans," "showed little, if
any measurable effect on grades and test scores." Teachers resisted

Notice in a discussion of a $275 million project, where $7.2 million was
paid to lease 6,000 laptops, $100,000 was spent on repairs (not
necessarily an exhoribit cost when considering that type of equipment),
then it mentions that the enrollment is "37 percent black, 31 percent
wite, and 25 percent Hispanic.

These quotes are amazing -- "But in many other classrooms, there was
nary a laptop in sight as teachers read from textbooks and scribbled on
chalkboards. Some teachers said they had felt compelled to teach with
laptops in the beginning, but stopped because they found they were
spending so much time coping with technical glitches that they were
unable to finish their lessons." "Let's face it, math is for the most
part still a paper-and-pencil activity when you're learning it," she
said." ARGH!

 "The art of thinking is being lost," he said. "Because people can type
in a word and find a source and think that's the be all end all." --
sure, because YOU need to teach them how to search intelligently, and
judge the quality of the content. That takes thinking too!

Clearly these teachers are unable to adapt to 21st century tools. It's
not the kids or the laptops, it's the educators and they view the
process and the tools.

What do you think?

-----Original Message-----
From: []
On Behalf Of Mike Cole
Sent: Saturday, May 05, 2007 4:06 PM
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: Re: [xmca] article: Seeing No Progress,Some Schools
Drop Laptops

That seems a more sophisticated analysis than my quick one. Thanks.
breaking away in the sense that Yrjo uses it and illustrated by michael
opens up, rather than closing down, possibilities.

On 5/5/07, Peg Griffin <> wrote:
> I'm not sure it is "other side of that coin."
> I think forming voluntary acts IS breaking away so activities and
> institutions grow.
> Now, often, we elders give in to and settle for destitute reactions
> like more surveillance, more external evaluation, and restricting
> access instead of recognizing and engaging with the alienation
> controlling the youngers reactions. In that way we elders abandon the
> youngers; it comes to "falling apart" not breaking away, reaction not
> action, destitution not institution.
> PG
> -----Original Message-----
> From: []

> On Behalf Of Mike Cole
> Sent: Saturday, May 05, 2007 11:03 AM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: Re: [xmca] article: Seeing No Progress,Some
> Schools Drop Laptops
> Yes, this was my personal reaction too. But note that michael (and
> Yrjo) are sensitive to the other side of that coin. Development as
> intergenerational nurturing and belief in adult responsibility.
> Actually, the kids WERE being supported in their activities by adults
> who believed the bs about laptops as magic bullet means to (approved)
> enculturation, to the tune of many millions of bucks from their taxes.
> Note that Mark Warschauer contends no benefits in learning to read,
> write, and numerate should be expected; enrichment (approved
> enrichment) is what one should aim for. But all the while, the
> breaking away, downloading pornography, etc potential is right there
> and will not go away. Nor will the fact that google is storing this
> message in its data base for marketing purposes, and perhaps to trade
> with the govt when it suits their purposes.
> I am watching a group I am connected with struggle to help kids who
> are struggling in school using computers as media. Part of their
> struggling involves creating selective firewalls while the kids
> cleverly find their ways around the fire walls. Meantime the path to a

> job at macdonalds gets more and more deeply in control of their
> futures. Or maybe they will find a way out by signing up for the army
> and its bright future?
> As I said when I posted this story (with help from Steve) its an
> article that invites a lot of thought and discussion.
> mike
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Received on Sat May 5 14:41 PDT 2007

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