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AMFELLOWS  January 1999

AMFELLOWS January 1999

Subject:

Better practices, anyway

From:

doctrgus <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

American Memory Fellows <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sat, 30 Jan 1999 12:19:07 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (120 lines)

--------------1CE914262E0FB75FC4A9E510
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Fellas:

Thanks to Monica and Peter for their thoughtful replies. Sometimes I feel
that we are, as they say, "preaching to the choir" as we post to one another:
we are, after all, among the small number of educators committed to using the
internet and new media in our work. The problem, I truly believe, is not with
us. As I wrote my original post a day or two ago outlining my short list of
best practices, it occurred to me that most or all of us are probably
following those dicta already -- that we already know about AUPs, about how to
set up, use, and control a computer room, and so on. So how do we disseminate
this knowledge among our colleagues locally?

I'm curious as to how other teachers' school districts are handling this
problem of teacher training. In Worcester I am often hired by the school
system to do development for various teacher groups. Usually the objective is
to teach some kind of software or internet material: spreadsheet, Front Page,
or How to Use the Internet to Teach [Science/Math/History/Music/Art or
all-of-the-above]. But in these workshops I try to squeeze in as much "best
practices" stuff as I can, and I tell the teachers that they aren't going to
teach any content until and unless they're running the computer room properly.

In my 10th period class I have 30-35 students, all freshmen, all jumpy, half
of them asking to go to the bathroom, none of them potential Fulbright
scholars -- and I don't need to tell you that it's an adventure bringing them
into the 20-station computer lab. I bring them there regularly anyway: almost
every day in the month of January: Martin Luther King material, then
impeachment, then for a terrific (if I do say so myself) online lesson on
Islam. They enjoyed these very much, learned a lot from each, I think, and
I've been happy with the results. But sometimes it seems that one teacher is
simply not enough. Needless to say again, I have been quick and firm with
discipline, and that policy has had a salutary effect with this class
especially.

Thanks again, Monica and Peter, for your replies. Monica, as for your
question:

> what sort of parent education are your schools/districts doing?

The answer here is simple: none. It's good to see that in your district they
have at least addressed the questions dealing with chat rooms, email,
security, etc. We have not gone even that far.

If I can change the subject for a moment, please: since I am an alumnus, like
all of us, of the LoC summer institute, I read with longing the current
announcements for the coming summer's workshop, almost wishing that there were
an opportunity to participate a 2nd time, or perhaps to have an "old-timer's"
gig. Since that is not to be, however, I am looking for other high-quality
workshops during the summer. Does anyone know of any, especially ones
emphasizing the internet and the new media? If you feel that it's
inappropriate to discuss this on this forum, you could send me information by
private email at [log in to unmask] Thanks.

Arnold

--------------1CE914262E0FB75FC4A9E510
Content-Type: text/html; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit

<HTML>
Fellas:

<P>Thanks to Monica and Peter for their thoughtful replies.&nbsp; Sometimes
I feel that we are, as they say, "preaching to the choir" as we post to
one another: we are, after all, among the small number of educators committed
to using the internet and new media in our work.&nbsp; The problem, I truly
believe, is not with us.&nbsp; As I wrote my original post a day or two
ago outlining my short list of best practices, it occurred to me that most
or all of us are probably following those dicta already -- that we <I>already</I>
know about AUPs, about how to set up, use, and control a computer room,
and so on.&nbsp; So how do we disseminate this knowledge among our colleagues
locally?

<P>I'm curious as to how other teachers' school districts are handling
this problem of teacher training.&nbsp; In Worcester I am often hired by
the school system to do development for various teacher groups.&nbsp; Usually
the objective is to teach some kind of software or internet material: spreadsheet,
Front Page, or How to Use the Internet to Teach [Science/Math/History/Music/Art
or all-of-the-above].&nbsp; But in these workshops I try to squeeze in
as much "best practices" stuff as I can, and I tell the teachers that they
aren't going to teach any content until and unless they're running the
computer room properly.

<P>In my 10th period class I have 30-35 students, all freshmen, all jumpy,
half of them asking to go to the bathroom, none of them potential Fulbright
scholars -- and I don't need to tell you that it's an adventure bringing
them into the 20-station computer lab.&nbsp; I bring them there regularly
anyway: almost every day in the month of January: Martin Luther King material,
then impeachment, then for a terrific (if I do say so myself) online lesson
on Islam.&nbsp; They enjoyed these very much, learned a lot from each,
I think, and I've been happy with the results.&nbsp; But sometimes it seems
that one teacher is simply not enough.&nbsp; Needless to say again, I have
been quick and firm with discipline, and that policy has had a salutary
effect with this class especially.

<P>Thanks again, Monica and Peter, for your replies.&nbsp; Monica, as for
your question:
<BLOCKQUOTE TYPE=CITE>what sort of parent education are your schools/districts
doing?</BLOCKQUOTE>
The answer here is simple: none.&nbsp; It's good to see that in your district
they have at least addressed the questions dealing with chat rooms, email,
security, etc.&nbsp; We have not gone even that far.

<P>If I can change the subject for a moment, please: since I am an alumnus,
like all of us, of the LoC summer institute, I read with longing the current
announcements for the coming summer's workshop, almost wishing that there
were an opportunity to participate a 2nd time, or perhaps to have an "old-timer's"
gig.&nbsp; Since that is not to be, however, I am looking for other high-quality
workshops during the summer.&nbsp; Does anyone know of any, especially
ones emphasizing the internet and the new media?&nbsp; If you feel that
it's inappropriate to discuss this on this forum, you could send me information
by private email at [log in to unmask]&nbsp; Thanks.

<P>Arnold</HTML>

--------------1CE914262E0FB75FC4A9E510--

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