Q&A #246

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Using the Internet in the classroom

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From: Suzanne Alejandre

To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 1998062901:19:15
Subject: Suggestions for one-computer classrooms

This is pretty general but here is my theory on one-computer classrooms. 1. Find a way to project that one computer onto a large monitor. If it is a Mac you need to have a video out port and a LTV Portable Pro or some sort of device that will translate the Mac video out to be read by the TV. Another possibility is to use a LCD projection panel. If the school has one, great, but to fund that personally is too expensive, particularly if you want color. Then of course there is the ultra-expensive video projector, which again works great IF the school has one available. 2. Once you have a means to have the class view the computer together, then here are some things that you can do: a. Demonstrate something that you are going to do in the lab. The day before going to the lab, go through the lesson showing the class using your monitor. This cuts down on time that you have to instruct in the lab and focuses the students so that you maximize the one-day shot in the lab. Example: Tessellations http://forum.swarthmore.edu/sum95/suzanne/tess.intro.html Show the step-by-step procedure using ClarisWorks. You could have the step-by-step directions available as a handout for the students OR you could have the students take notes as you model the assignment for them (my college-bound students take notes because that is an important part of their program.) OR you could have a student who comes in extra be your assistant - you could show her/him the lesson ahead of time and have her/him be the person who demonstrates. b. Work the lesson together as a class. If your one computer has direct Web access, then this is the easiest, but even if not you can use WebWhacker and "whack" the site that you want to use. So a Problem of the Week could be presented in this way. You display (either live Internet access or simulated) the problem and then all students work on it. If you have live access you can submit your answers right then. If you don't, you will need to have the students write them down so that you can submit the answers later. [Note: Some people say you don't need the computer display to do this. No, you don't, but it is more engaging for the students.] c. Display an example of something that supports your lesson. If you are teaching the concept of pi you can show the Geometer's Sketchpad sketch that illustrates this concept. There are many great Sketchpad sketches that you can download from the Forum that illustrate concepts wonderfully. This would be like using video clips to support a history lesson, or like using laserdisc clips to support a science lesson. - Suzanne Alejandre

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