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    Joined: Feb 2011
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    Originally Posted by Val
    Sounds like anything-goes spelling is a candidate for HK's rogue's gallery of bad educational practices.

    Well, maybe not for all kids- but yes, for some of them, I'd say so.


    Schrödinger's cat walks into a bar. And doesn't.
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    Perhaps it works better for boys? I note that Dude, HK and I are all parents of girls.

    Though I personally don't see how it helps anyone to have to unlearn bad habits.

    Last edited by MumOfThree; 08/29/13 03:52 PM.
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    Well, it doesn't seem to have affected my female child one way or the other. She just used to get aggravated with her teachers when they wouldn't tell her how to spell things. "Just TELL me how to spell it. I KNOW this isn't how you spell it." Knowing my DD, they eventually gave up and told her. wink

    To be fair, they taught her pencil grip, punctuation, capitals, etc and she has always used lined paper. But spelling was not, and still is not, an emphasis. She did have spelling words starting in 1st. She has never gotten one wrong.

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    MON, those concerns are legitimate. Academic content providers cross-pollinate in games, apps, and consumer packaged goods. The proliferation of iPads in schools enables them to carry out direct to consumer (DTC) marketing targeted at children while in class, a market traditionally accessible only by food and book providers. It's disturbing, because it marks a shift into a more overt consumerist mindset in education.

    This line of thought is not to undermine the many benefits of improved technology in the classroom, but rather to highlight the ideology driving the change. Shall we say, this idea wasn't cooked up in education circles.

    As with anything, success lies in how the trade off is balanced. I'd be impressed if policy makers were swift to enact DTC and branding embargoes on devices used in the classroom. It's just another marketing channel; such limits would be directly analogous to current DTC restrictions on TV.


    What is to give light must endure burning.
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    Originally Posted by master of none
    The kids do have their IPAD all day every day. They are supposed to carry it around at all times. And they are supposed to take it home and use it for homework. It has become the primary means of doing anything and everything. It makes the interface between kid and machine and reduces the role of parent and teacher.

    This really hasn't happened at our school at all - yes, the students use their iPads as their primary means of writing, putting together project data/etc, taking notes, etc and yes, the iPads are with them for all their classes except PE and music - but it doesn't decrease "face time" or interaction with teachers and other students. The type of things it has replaced are writing in a notebook or on a piece of paper, pasting papers on a poster board, reading from a book, etc.

    I also don't feel it's reduced my role as a parent in any way - I still interact with my ds about what's happened at school each day, I help him with homework when he needs it etc.

    The place where I see computer technology potentially cutting into my ds' life is access to games where he becomes so engrossed that he doesn't want to come up for air and join the rest of us in the real world - but that is far different from the role the iPads play at school and in homework.

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    Originally Posted by polarbear
    Originally Posted by master of none
    The kids do have their IPAD all day every day. They are supposed to carry it around at all times. And they are supposed to take it home and use it for homework. It has become the primary means of doing anything and everything. It makes the interface between kid and machine and reduces the role of parent and teacher.

    This really hasn't happened at our school at all - yes, the students use their iPads as their primary means of writing, putting together project data/etc, taking notes, etc and yes, the iPads are with them for all their classes except PE and music - but it doesn't decrease "face time" or interaction with teachers and other students. The type of things it has replaced are writing in a notebook or on a piece of paper, pasting papers on a poster board, reading from a book, etc. The iPads are closed more often than they are open, even though the kids use them in all of their classes every day.

    I also don't feel it's reduced my role as a parent in any way - I still interact with my ds about what's happened at school each day, I help him with homework when he needs it etc.

    The place where I see computer technology potentially cutting into my ds' life is access to games where he becomes so engrossed that he doesn't want to come up for air and join the rest of us in the real world - but that is far different from the role the iPads play at school and in homework.

    polarbear

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    Originally Posted by polarbear
    The place where I see computer technology potentially cutting into my ds' life is access to games where he becomes so engrossed that he doesn't want to come up for air and join the rest of us in the real world - but that is far different from the role the iPads play at school and in homework.

    polarbear

    Yup. And I am increasingly seeing the benefit of teaching the kid to manage this before sending him out into the world to do college or have a job. Unchecked, gaming would be a major threat to my DS's ability to operate in the world... better that he learn to control the habit than that we just don't let him see it.

    DeeDee

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    Ability grouping and subject acceleration could be used to tailor the curriculum to students' interests and learning speeds, but since those practices are not politically correct, let's give them all tablets.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/15/magazine/no-child-left-untableted.html
    No Child Left Untableted
    By CARLO ROTELLA
    New York Times
    September 12, 2013

    Quote
    When I asked Klein, who routinely characterizes current debates about education as “ideological, not evidence-based,” what evidence supports spending tax dollars on educational technology, he boiled it down to three things. First and most important was the power of “customizing.” Plenty of research does indeed show that an individual student will learn more if you can tailor the curriculum to match her learning style, pace and interests; the tablet, he said, will help teachers do that. Second, educators have not taken full advantage of students’ enthusiasm for the gadgetry that constitutes “an important part of their experience.” Lastly, teachers feel overwhelmed; they “need tools,” Klein said, to meet ever-increasing demands to show that their students are making progress.

    Amplify has tested preliminary versions of its tablets and curriculum in a dozen small pilot programs, but Guilford County is its first paying customer. By next fall the company intends to have its products in middle schools across the country, with high schools and perhaps elementary schools to follow. Competition for this market is growing more intense. Major competitors — like Apple’s iPad — are scrambling to get in on the sales bonanza created by what educators call “1:1 technology programs,” those that provide a device to every student and teacher. And so potential customers — 99,000 K-12 schools spend $17 billion annually on instructional materials and technology — will be looking closely at Guilford County, a district with a modest budget and a mix of urban, suburban and rural sections that makes it a plausible proxy for school systems nationwide. They will want to see teachers’ enthusiasm for the tablets, as well as increased “time on task” and other signs of students’ greater engagement. Most important, of course, they’ll be looking for higher test scores in two or three years.

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    Quote
    Ability grouping and subject acceleration could be used to tailor the curriculum to students' interests and learning speeds, but since those practices are not politically correct,

    You know, we had a discussion a while ago about whether the tide is turning on this, and I have something to contribute on that. DD's K teacher has explained that during work time, there is color-coded (harder) work in math and reading boxes that he knows is for him. He also is in math and reading groups that meet with the teacher individually (I think his reading group has only two kids in it). When I expressed great gratitude for this--DD9 got no differentiation at all in K other than a few things we nagged for, like workbooks we brought in--she said "Oh, we all do it this way now. (DS) needs even more, but the grouping is standard." He also gets harder homework, which I think one other child also gets.


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    Digital technology could help with ability grouping and subject acceleration to tailor the curriculum = and those practices are not politically correct, but I agree that the tide is hopefully changing. You've got a lot of parents becoming more vocal about rote-based learning, the OCD situation with standards, testing, uniformity, and the one-size-fits-all approach.

    Why is the focus on iPads and not on the use of free/open source digital technology to tailoring learning and make it more engaging and relevant? I agree that there are lot of issues with swapping textbooks for iPads. Must be the political backhand deals and lack of transparency in procuring digital technology (hardware or software) that I've been seeing.

    I don't understand why public schools are not embracing free/open source digital technology though because this is one the ways they can accommodate the wide range of learners (we're not all linguistic learners), abilities, interests, and cultural/ socioeconomic differences -- and most importantly those with special needs and 2e kids (who are presently often denied accommodations and differentiation in the public schools).

    If the public schools ditched the textbooks and used free/open source, then my 2e/pg 7.5-yr-old son might have a chance of being accommodated. They don't and cannot at the moment. Instead I'm un/homeschooling him as a result. Then again, I don't the public schools truly understand how fundamentally society is about to change with digital technology.

    Parents and teachers are supposed to offer guidance to children based on their experience and supposedly wisdom that comes with age. If teachers or schools can not help children learn when to switch on/off computers, then what hope do we have with the public schools? Does no one stop and think or see the big picture here?

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