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Should Netbooks be Required?

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Mark at The Elementary Educator asks when schools will make netbooks required materials, much like calculators for a math class, or gym shoes for gym class.

Here's another comparison: in the elementary school in which I teach, students are required to keep a separate pair of gym shoes in their lockers at all times (except when in use). Judging by the looks of the shoes that students bring in, I'm sure many of these pairs of shoes cost $30-$50 or more. When the price of netbooks drops to around $99 (especially with the school getting a discount due to volume), is it really that unreasonable to say that if we're willing to ask parents to spend $30 to $50 or more on shoes for a class we only have once a week for 50 minutes, we might as well go ahead and ask parents to throw $100 down to buy something that we're going to use to revolutionize the way we do school?

But Mark notes that the investment in a netbook could have interesting implications for the classroom.

After spending money on the mini-laptops, parents and teachers might be more insistent on students putting them to good use.

1 Comment

The implication are if a State doesn't require keyboarding mastery of any grade, how could this ever apply. In Minnesota, if district a has a Assistive Technology plans, they are require recongize a national standard for funding. Yet because there are no state mandated grade level Technology mastery or proficiency, it is not measured. Yes they be embedded in classroom, yet are not truely measured. Think about these implication how it affects college readness, and access. Or how this affect State new MCA-III assessments. They are now becoming computorized and constructive responce are being removed from the reading and Math tests[URL(URL Rational*;2005 Legislative report, PDF pgs 11,18,21,30,42-3)] How about this in 21st century. Feed back is welcome and encouraged.

*URL orhttp://archive.leg.state.mn.us/docs/2005/mandated/050400.pdf

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