As technologies evolve, computer programs seem to be moving away from software-based models to something more complex that takes advantage of the far-reaching possibilities of the Internet. Learning is evolving, too, as educators work with "traditional" software programs, Web-based programs, programs that are a combination of both, and programs that are network- or server-based.
Unlike the familiar, narrowly focused, somewhat episodic programs for short-term use on individual computers without Internet access, much of the new "Webware" is broad and continues to become even broader. These programs are becoming so highly interactive and wide-reaching that they can be used in a number of subjects with students of a variety of abilities and grade levels, including elementary learners.
Of course, many schools still don't have enough computers, especially at the elementary level, to take full advantage of these programs. As a result, programs delivered on CD-ROM still have a place in education.
This article begins with a look at some examples of the excellent smaller, more narrowly focused elementary programs available on CD and moves on to examples of some of the outstanding, more far-reaching programs available via the Web or a network of some type.
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