One Laptop Per Child

Garrett Cooper youshi10 at
Mon Nov 12 14:06:12 PST 2007

Kevin Kinsey wrote:
> Chuck Robey wrote:
>>>> I am usually not the one to bring up these things but I feel very
>>>> strongly about this. Starting Monday, November 12 this website is
>>>> offering a give one get one deal. I believe the money will be well
>>>> invested. YMMV
>>> That is a difficult issue, while this is an opportunity, I doubt this
>>> is the most needed thing to provide education. We are talking giving
>>> laptop to people who do not even have electricity in some cases...
>> You ought to actually _visit_ one or more of the schools that have 
>> practical computers for the kids.  At least in my own experience, 
>> well, it's very disillusioning.  The teachers have only a vague 
>> notion about what a compuiter is, so basically the students are given 
>> some  games to waste their time with, and graded on how quiet they 
>> are while playing. The teachers themselves are usually actually 
>> frightened of the machines,  so they react negatively to anyone who 
>> volunteers to teach computers.
>> I wish it wasn't this way.  Maybe it's just in the schools I visited? 
>> If so, anyone have a better experience?  Until I hear of some, I 
>> won't contribute to any "computers for kids" deal, because  it only 
>> benefits big computer companies, who sell the machines, not the kids.
> I'd say that it is possible your observations have clued you in on
> a large problem.  Of course, it's likely not that way everywhere, but
> one result of a lack of teacher education re: computers is that people
> tend to think that they are computer literate if they can handle an
> office suite and use a pointy-clicky interface to build web "pages"
> --- which explains a few things about the culture at large.
> Another problem is that use of the Internet for research in
> writing papers, etc. often misses the crucial "old school" step
> of actually writing notes based on the books your read before
> you begin the paper.  Recently I read a report by a 9th grader that
> was composed mostly of direct quotes from Wikipedia, et al, with
> no attribution whatsoever.  "Copy n Paste" may work in elementary
> art classes, but it's no good in academic research unless great
> pains are taken to ensure understanding and proper attribution.
> And, this may be near the real heart of the issue.  I don't think
> that many school administrators feel that games, educational or not,
> are the reason that schools should have computers.  I think that, in
> large extent, computers were added when some of them discovered that
> the Internet could give you more volumes of information than the
> school library, without leaving your seat or requiring a hall pass.
> And that is why teachers should be a little more geeky, perhaps.
> Plugging a child's computer into the network without knowledgeable
> and *personal* guidance will pretty much guarantee that most kids
> end up on the baser end of the 'Net, rather than the best.  And,
> for the most part, teachers are no less busy than they were 10,
> 20, or 30 years ago.
> My $.02,
> Kevin Kinsey

    Could you guys please redirect this discussion to chat@? Thanks...

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