No matter what I sit down to do over the last 2 days all that keeps coming back to me is this article I saw on Twitter. I didn’t even read the damn thing. The words “2.5 Million Laptops Later, One Laptop Per Child Doesn’t Improve Test Scores [STUDY]” just keep popping into my head. Along with “Really…” and “What a waste of money”…
I heard about it a few years back, too. That the kids would need laptops for school. I was skeptical. I told my mother that it seemed like a plot from the PTO to try to get some time back from their busy schedules as a mom; access to a laptop and wiki, google etc. means fewer questions a parent has to answer. Yeah I know it’s not the case, I just like to be a snot 🙂
But I did see it as a mistake. And just for that issue above. All a device does is disconnect the child from other people. There will be less asking questions of an adult and getting more than an answer. The unfortunate part is that most parents are cool with that.
When a kid types into Google “when was world war 2”, they’re not going to be asked to think about it; to remember what they’ve learned. There will not be the conversation that goes along with a parent having the opportunity to share knowledge. In short, the kids are shorted from learning off of a laptop.
There are benefits, for sure. I even reap them. No need to go out to the library if you don’t have an encyclopedia or the weather’s crap. It’s a great resource for Boo and her art; one could look through every book in the house and not find a picture of an elephant holding a teddy bear. The kids should also know how to use a computer. They’re everywhere, and word, PowerPoint and excel are needed skills. But where it that line? The cut off where we put our Mom/Dad panties on and say “No. You don’t need it for that”.
Not to mention the expenditure. I’m no math wiz, but 2.5 million laptops at about $200 a piece? That’s a big effin chunk of change. And to know that all of that money was put into something that has, after 5 years in some cases (ended up reading the study), not improved a damn thing in our kids. Then the article talks about it being a big expenditure for low-income countries….I can think of a district school right here in my neighborhood that could use some teachers. Windows. New playground equipment. And books and materials that would benefit the kids.
How do you feel about the turn in education? Is technology benefiting our kids or just pushing them to less dependence on mom and dad? Please tell us what you think!