Internet @ Schools
Three types of researchers show up at my high school library. Many are what I categorize as the research slugs, identifiable in two variations. The first is the easy-to-spot student hiding in a corner of the library, head propped up and a puddle of drool on the table. The second slug variation is much harder to spot. This is the student who has the Annals of America open with a People magazine hidden inside. The slug is intent on avoiding research and may expend large amounts of energy to do so.
Everyone is beginning to drown in information. Offer them a life preserver and they just might take you up on it. The satisfaction you'll gain in seeing all your library's information technology and resources finally being heavily and effectively used will only be matched by the resulting improvements in student learning you'll witness!
In this article, several math and assessment packages are examined in an effort both to describe them--and the benefits that technology-based products can bring to math teaching and assessment--and to address the issue of how to look at and select such products.
The Internet has added whole new dimensions to databases—not only to the type and breadth of information available—but to the complexity and problems involved in getting the information.
Sep/Oct 2004: Product Reviews
Charles Doe reviews the CIBS-R Management System, a Web-based student record book, scoring sheet, scorer, and performance tracker for student progress as measured by the BRIGANCE Comprehensive Inventory of Basic Skills--Revised (CIBS-R).
Go! Temp is a science tool that provides students with the opportunity to collect, examine, and calculate data using a sensor probe. The program allows data to be saved, displayed, graphed, analyzed, and recalled.
PLATO Intermediate Writing Process and Practice is designed to supplement and support the teaching of writing in the middle school years. The program contains levels of lessons with a focus on many of the specific writing skills set by NCTE and the Mid-Continent Research for Education and Learning Lab.
The Blobs, an interactive animated program with narration by Jane Horrocks, helps students learn basic number, letter, color, and beginning word skills.
With federal mandates such as No Child Left Behind stretching school budgets, it is essential to find additional funding sources, especially for technology initiatives. Grants are one option, but where do you start? CyberBee has written numerous grants ranging from a few thousand dollars from private foundations to several million dollars from federal programs such as Enhancing Education Through Technology Title II-D. Much has been learned from these experiences. The examples presented below are general and do not represent an entire grant, which might be several pages in length. These samples of grant language, funding sources, and Web sites are shared in the hope that more teachers will consider writing a grant as an alternative way of providing technology resources and professional development to their schools.
Data gathering, data-driven decision-making, and accountability are today's buzzwords. Media specialists should take note: Make ongoing data collection routine so that information needed for advocacy, decision-making, and gaining program support is quickly accessible when needed.
In "Learning Unleashed!" Trevor Shaw is chronicling the progress of a multi-faceted technology initiative at the Dwight-Englewood School, a private K-12 day school in Bergen County, New Jersey. This issue's column focuses on introducing the school's board and staff to the concepts involved, and 30 of the staff to new tablet computers.
Sep/Oct 2004: In the Spotlight
The InFocus LP600 projector offers a variety of connection options—wired or wireless, computer or video sources—even the option to go PC-free with a USB flash drive.