What I appreciate about this list is the diversity of perspectives:
elementary, middle, high school and Higher Ed as well as techies,
integration specialists, classroom and specialist teachers.

Larry: your inquiry was to-the-point, and I apologize for dodging it and
turning to broader topics.

Attached is the 7th/8th grade curriculum that we had been doing up until
recently. It is roughly based on VT Tech GCEs for that grade cluster, but
includes reinforcement of skills for younger grades (reality: 7th graders do
not come in with consistent experience from grades 3-6). Sadly it is a
³broad brush² of topics and projects were done in a contrived context ­ for
a variety of reasons (scheduling in particular) it was difficult to work in
conjunction with core teachers. In the final two years of this program (now
discontinued) I began to add a smattering of web 2.0 tools including Google
Docs and Wiki use. The real drawback was that because we were ³pulling kids
out² many teachers assumed that the kids were achieving the standards, when
the reality was that students need more than brief ³exposure² to these tools
to master them. Regular opportunity and practice needs to be everyone¹s
responsibility, not just the ³computer teacher¹s²

My personal view has been that 8th grade competency is the most critical,
for it is the last year that all students receive ³the same² instruction.
Once they enter High School their experiences will diversify, and the extent
to which they learn and apply tech skills will depend on course selection.
For that reason our ³optimistic² goal would be to send kids to the High
School with exposure to a variety of applications and their functions, as
well as the ability to learn new applications (focus on universal
functionality vs. specifics) and recognize ³the right tool for the job² when
they have a task to accomplish. I guess this is how we (locally) are
defining ³technological literacy² as per NCLB etc.

I look forward to the discussions about revisions to GCEs, as clearly there
are skills that are overlooked in such a straightforward approach to
computer applications. It is interesting to me that the ³technology²
standards include process skills that transcend the use of tech tools: ³21st
Century Learning² skills that are incorporated into IT simply because that
is the context in which they are practiced?

On snow days you get 10 cents...


on 1/28/09 8:20 AM, Steve Cavrak wrote:

> On Jan 27, 2009, at 9:04 PM, Laurence Booker wrote:
>> Next step:  please tell me what you guys do in your IT classes so I can
>> measure my own classes
>> and what I teach them.  If you're way ahead of me -- and I want to know this,
>> if it is so -- then
>> I have to catch up.
> Following Lucie's reminder, I dug up a link to
> Information Technology and Vermont Education Goals: A Vermont State Technology
> Council Position Paper.
> A number of the essential skills relate to more than one strand or area. These
> are higher- level thinking skills such as analyzing, synthesizing and
> evaluating. These skills are recognized as basic to the effective use of
> information technology. We also recognize a core of knowledge necessary for
> students in the use of technological tools for learning and working. This core
> includes: basic terminology, ethics, privacy, ownership, copyright, health
> issues, and vocational implications of technology.
> A  classic ...
> ---
> This thread reminded me of some of the more modern skills - not included in
> the "office" suite ...
> - social computing a la youtube, facebook, orkut, ...
> - collaborative computing a la online conferencing, webinars, wikimedia,
> twitter, aim, ...
> - media computing a la flickr, fotolog,
> - datasharing a la delicious, citulike, digg,
> - keitai computing a la iphone, blackberry, android,
> - ??? a la dslight (brain age, sonomama, ...) or wii/fit