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

From: Mike Cole <lchcmike who-is-at>
Date: Sun May 06 2007 - 09:05:01 PDT

It was Carol Emerson, Bakhtin scholar, who first used the term "conversation
with the future" in connection with Vygotsky, Paul. Peg Griffin and I wrote
about this in an article called
"Current activity for the future" and these ideas are being developed
locally by Beth Ferholt and researchers associated with LCHC in one way or
another working in the domain of play.

Yrjo has asked "when is a tool"? We are asking questions like "what
actions/activities are tools
for (remembering their inherent polyvalence/polysemy)." Some very expert
teachers (both in use of laptops in conventional ways and in pedagogically
sophisticated ways) are involved
in laptop classroom research.

Some of them are connected to XMCA. I hope we hear more voices reflecting
more aspects of the problem and potential ways to think about it.

On 5/5/07, Hallam,Teresa A <> wrote:
> Good point -- thank you for the eloquent answer - when I said "these
> teachers are unable to adapt" I did not mean to "demonize"teachers but
> to point out how crucial teacher beliefs and attitudes are in the
> success of educational technology.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: []
> On Behalf Of White, Phillip
> Sent: Saturday, May 05, 2007 7:47 PM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: RE: [xmca] article: Seeing No Progress,Some Schools
> Drop Laptops
> 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?
> _____________________________________________
> i think that it would help, Teresa, to look at this from a CHAT
> perspective rather than deficit theory ("teachers are unable ...")
> afterall, we recognize that it doesn't help teachers to deal with
> their own students when they use deficit theory - "kids don't have the
> background knowledge" - "the parents don't care" - "the teachers before
> me didn't do their job" etc.
> and it doesn't serve us as CHAT practitioners to explain social
> activities through deficit theory - we need to begin with the
> assumption, which i happen to think is correct, that for the most part
> teachers are doing what they think they should be doing, and are
> attempting to both meet the needs of their students as well as the laws
> in NCLB - which, similarly problematizes teachers has replete with
> multiple deficits - "lazy", "ignorant", "uncaring", "hiding behind
> corrupt unions", etc.
> one of the great tragedies of the 20th century in education is that
> teachers has been demonized by the political left just as much as they
> have been demonized by the political right - and this has done none of
> us any good - clearly from a CHAT perspective teachers do not stand
> alone, decontextualized, as the categorical statement "teachers are
> unable..." suggests.
> i think it woud help to have a CHAT perspective -
> phillip
> Phillip A. White, Lecturer
> University of Colorado at Denver, Health Sciences Center School of
> Education, Human Development Teacher Education
> _______________________________________________
> xmca mailing list
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Received on Sun May 6 10:06 PDT 2007

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