Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Mr. Meyer...when will we really start using them?

I have waited to post here as I have felt that, in comparison to other laptop rooms, we have done little so far. We have blogged (sometimes to an obsessive extent), but that has been done out of class. We did some research in class, utilizing our laptops to look at the constitutionality of some scenarios and then finding cases to support our findings. The activity seemed to play out much like it had without computers, except the computers seemd to slow them down a bit. The two times they were the most helpful were when the counselors took the seniors and when we had a sub. Both times, I was able to create lessons that I think had value rather than relying on a video (usually used just in case the sub wasn't prepared for A.P. level discussions).

So what have we been doing? In my mind, we have spent six weeks developing a constructivist mindset where students have created an atmosphere where they want to know more, where they are challenging each other to support their ideas, where they are participating beyond "is it on the test?" discussions. Now they are ready for laptops and the wikis, podcasts, etc. that are better suited to future units.

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