A one year study was conducted to see how Microcomputers would affect the classroom. Four teachers from San Diego, all with various computer skills, where given microcomputers, curriculum and software to use. Their classrooms were observed three times a week throughout the year long study. There were two different predictions made on the affects of using microcomputers in the classroom.
The technology would cause changes in the social organization of a classroom.
Schools will reject computer innovations assuming that social organization determines technology use.
This article talked about the use of microcomputers being used in the classroom and the affects it would have the social organization in schools. I found that there were no major changes on how the classes were being planned and scheduled and the amount of time being used for each lesson. The study showed me that the students participation level increased as well as some of their education skills. One significant change was that the teachers were able to achieve education goals with their students that were not attainable before. The author wrote, “It is not the features inherent in the machine but what people do with the machine that determine how microcomputers will be used in education” (Mehan, 1989, p1). This is telling me that the microcomputers can to nothing except enhance your classroom capabilities. It all depends how they are used whether or not they can make an impact on your class.
This article is about a two year study involving three teachers who were learning to use technology in the context of a laptop computer program in their classrooms. Researchers just started looking into laptop programs and how they shape their teachers thinking. Laptop programs bring up complex issues like affordability, curriculum, administrative, fiscal, and cultural. A couple of questions also arise from the idea of integrating laptop programs into the classrooms.
How the teachers would integrate the technology into their working lives and into the curriculum.
How it would affect the teachers interrelated belief system about their students.
This article was about the integration of laptop programs into the school systems. The study showed that despite the three teachers having a little difficultly with knowing when and how to use the laptops, the students found them very usefully. The fact that the students were able to look up information on their own and produce professional looking documents increased their confidence in their own work. The best outcome is that it forces the students to think on their own and use critical thinking skills more often. This is not about whether laptops are useful and have a place in the classroom, it is about whether the teachers are able to make the change. The authors sums it up best when they wrote, “In laptop classrooms, teachers must consider how to execute curriculum and manage an environment in which learners can pick up their computers to sit with others who are working on similar problems, bring the computer to the teacher with a question, or connect with the learners outside the classroom” (Windschilt/Sahl,2002, p170).
This article is about a project involving several school classes ranging from middle school, high school and college level courses using Wiki’s. They teachers set it up so the students were able to chose there own topics and create online multimedia reports. The use of the Wiki’s allowed the teachers a great degree of control over who is allowed to view and edit the different documents. All of the teachers made sure that they taught their students how to use Wiki properly before giving them any assignments. Then the students were given an assignment where they could create an collaborated paper on wiki. The use of Wiki allowed the students to brainstorm ideas together, make contributions, and make any changes to the paper at anytime.
In this article they talk about a group of different classes ranging form middle school, up to college level courses using Wiki programs. Reading this article and also from my personal experiences with Wiki in this class, I feel it is a very useful tool for group projects. With the ability to go on and make changes on your own time makes it great for individuals in college who are working and going to school as well. However, I feel though younger age groups miss out the true meaning of working as a group when they don’t have to really work together at anytime. I also feel that it limits some individuals work ability when they can’t move on when they are waiting for their partners to do their share of the work.
While researching these three articles I came to one conclusion. There is no debate on whether or not technology in the classroom is a productive tool to use. These articles clearly shoe that the use of the technology in the classroom produce a better learning environment for the students. The use of the ever changing technology in our world today in the classroom setting is the key to a successful future in maintaining our ability to be the worlds leader in advancement.
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Mehan, M. (Mar., 1989). Microcomputers in classrooms: educational technology or social practice?
In Anthropology & Education Quarterly , Vol. 20, No. 1 (Mar., 1989), pp. 4-22
Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the American Anthropology Association.
Windschitl, M. & Sahl, K. (2002). Tracing teachers’ use of technology in a laptop computer school:
The interplay of teacher beliefs, social dynamics, and institutional culture. In American
educational research journal, Vol. 39, No.1 (spring, 2002), pp.165-205. American Educational
Morgan, B. & Smith, R. (2008). Technology in literacy education: A wiki for classroom writing. In
The reading teacher, Vol. 62, No. 1 (Sep., 2008), pp80-82. International Reading Association.