Arizona School Replacing Textbooks With The Internet

from the babt-with-the-bathwater dept

This fall, a Tuscon high school will become the state’s first all-wireless, all-laptop public school, replacing standard paper textbooks with online articles. The intent is to force teachers away from the habit of “simply marching through a textbook each year” by forcing teachers to create lesson plans based on available online articles. To completely toss out textbooks is a haphazard, careless move. While students with laptops are more engaged in the classroom (hopefully not IM’ing with classmates), to assume that a textbook can be replaced by Googling today’s lesson is a tad aggressive. It’s not that laptops are a bad idea in the classroom — but, to implement them without a clear plan or curriculum is careless. Even the superintendent admits that “It’s not clear how the change to laptops will work.” While the intentions are good, school administrators are looking to put in a quick fix for outdated textbooks (this time with the PR-worthy cry of “The Internet Will Save Our Schools!”) — then again, at least Arizona isn’t following California’s lead and outlawing all books over 200 pages.


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Comments on “Arizona School Replacing Textbooks With The Internet”

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8 Comments
Block Sheep (user link) says:

maybe so, maybe not

> To completely toss out textbooks
> is a haphazard, careless move.

This is probably true for new teachers, but not so much for experienced teachers who (a) have learned how to adapt to ever changing research (and policies) in education and (b) probably have already made a shift away from textbooks anyway.

For most teachers this is a gradual process of replacing each section of the curriculum as better and more meaningful alternatives are tried and discovered, so an abrupt change probably isn’t a good idea, but it is sound pedagogy to replace as much textbook learning as possible with authentic exercises, activities, and readings.

steph says:

pc's at school

i think laptops at school would be the most wonderful thing to ever happen because u can aquire cheap good working laptops easily and textbooks cost a lot of money and most aren’t updated. like the science books are still considering pluto as a ninth planet when now its considered a dwarf planet..also its alot easier on both students and teachers so deal with it…laptops over power the textbooks.

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