My Thoughts- Solomon’s Precepts

January 22, 2009 at 6:26 pm (Uncategorized)

Access to up-to-date hardware, software, and connectivity

The internet is full of useful resources that are available to us for limited or no cost (such as Anti-Virus software).  Throughout the technology program, I’ve been exposed to numerous free online resources that are available to any (i.e. Audacity, etc).  Connectivity on the other hand is not as powerful.  There is limited access due to location.  It is still much better than in the past.  Digital cable now offers modems for high speed internet verses dial-up (in rural areas). 

Access to meaningful, high-quality, and culturally responsive content and the opportunity to contribute to that content

I don’t think access to low income families is met as much as it could be.  Low income families can go to the public library for internet use; however, what would be the case if they had no transportation?  Educational issues are addressed via internet but having access to that information (especially those that live under the $14,500 per year) is limited to the user.  This being an aid to bridge the digital divide (maybe with our new president) doesn’t seem so relevant when you look at the conditions of some living in poverty. 

Access to educators who know how to use digital tools and resources

I think teachers are expected to use the tools; however, little effort has been placed on training.  Yes, if you beg you may get assistance; however, you must first have some background knowledge.  Many teachers don’t have the background knowledge needed to use some of the digital tools available.  As far as access to educators who know how to use the tools…learning by doing is the only way that some become experts.  I don’t feel this is as important as having access to useful resources…teachers can be resources without knowing how to use the digital tools.  For example, I received an Airliner for my classroom this year.  I had no idea how to use the tool; however, when my students and I worked together, we realized it was a wonderful tool to use for every subject.  We learned together!  Having access to me was not the benefit; rather, having access to the tool. 

Access to systems sustained by leaders with vision and support for change via technology

I think the author means having access for ALL people will make a difference with leaders having visions to change via technology.  Having support to stay updated on the latest technology will help overcome barriers for the digital divide. For example, in the classroom, if we’re still solely using the outdated overhead projector and have no other forms of technology to use to better serve our students; we do not have the support needed to make the change.  Support within a school district to stay updated via technology is a very important in meeting those barriers (not that we use them all the time; however, technology can benefit many in the classroom). 

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4 Comments

  1. camargoteacher said,

    I thought that we had a very similar understanding of the chapter. I also think you are a very lucky teacher to have all the technology in your room. I am impressed that our school has moved this far, I just hope they think of the rest of us soon 🙂

  2. Diana said,

    Jennifer,
    I know exactly how you feel. It took me three years to get the technology I have. I didn’t realize you were still waiting (sorry). I don’t understand why school district do not see the benefit of technology for all. My father -in -law recently purchased SmartBoards for all his preschool rooms. I was very jealous…preschool having such advanced technology and we still had none. However, things turned around and it seems Camargo’s on the rise. You’re welcome to use my room any time!

  3. teachertoolbox said,

    Diana and Jennifer,
    Your posts made me think about how students within our own building do not have equal opportunities for educational access. My classroom is loaded with technology, which enhances the education that my students receive. However, just last year, some kindergartners had big screens, a projector, and an airliner, while the kindergartners sitting in the room across the hall had none of that. We are on the rise and getting better, yay! However, until all of our classrooms are outfitted with the same equipment, students within the walls of our own school are not receiving an equal opportunity.

  4. Diana said,

    Laura,
    That is exactly the case…until we all have the same it’s not truly equal. Going even further, would it ever really be equal opportunities because our students within the classroom are so diverse. Some have computers at home while others have nothing. Some students have strong parental support while others have none. I think that greatly impacts technology because there’s only so much we can do within the five + instructional hours per day we have them. When they can access these same opportunities from home, it really makes a difference. I guess that is wishful thinking. Maybe one day!!!! Interesting point…but I’m still glad we’re on the rise. Great things are happening and I only seem them getting better.

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