Weighing The Costs And Benefits Of Laptops In Schools

from the sounds-good-in-theory... dept

Having just posted (and disputed) a study saying that internet access may be harmful to teens, Salon is running an article looking at the book Never Mind the Laptops, which apparently makes a very strong case for why every student should have a laptop in school. The book is apparently quite well written and goes through a ton of historical information (on both sides of the debate) and explains why putting laptops in the hands of all kids is the best thing we could do for the education system. However, the Salon piece makes a very interesting juxtaposition with the book, as the writer, Andrew Leonard, thinks about how his own children's schools are struggling to not lay off teachers, and wonders how they could ever possibly afford to give a laptop to every student. It's yet another situation where the idea sounds good, and probably is a good idea for the kids - but has too high an upfront price for it ever to get approved. It's really too bad, as the case studies we wrote about the experiment in Maine to give every kid a laptop, suggest that the program was doing wonders for students.
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  1. identicon
    AMetamorphosis, 1 Oct 2003 @ 8:37am

    A great advantage

    I would love to see the advent of laptops available for each and every student for numerous reasons:
    1. It places personal responsibility into the hands of students and is a good lesson on what they will encounter in the real world.
    2. Computers are the way the future is going and those that are not computer literate will fast become 3rd class citizens.
    3. Assignments and books can be downloaded and uploaded onto laptops creating less work for teachers and students and a faster more efficient way to review these items.
    4. In the long run, a laptop for each student HAS to be cheaper than a workstation and numerous books.
    5. It allows students to research while learning and can be combined to spur intelligent ( HEAR ME MIKE AND DORPUS !!! ) debates that can enlighten and teach.

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