I have considered a “pre-check” form as well, but am concerned that this would become an obstacle. It is already a challenge for teachers to distribute laptops and wait for startup (“sleeping” between sessions was not working well at all), which takes 5-10 minutes of their 45 minute block. Take away 5 at the end for putting things away properly (this is where the equipment REALLY takes a beating!) and on-task time is 30 minutes. True: some of this speaks the the need for more flexible/block scheduling and extended instructional time.
SO I am continuing to hang my hopes on training for both teachers and (more importantly) students. I met with every class early in the year when they first started using laptops, and have been doing “refreshers” recently now that they have become (too) comfortable with the equipment. I think there is a role for community self-regulation here: if kids value having this equipment available, they will take care of it AND police peers who are not taking care. The most significant issue is teachers who are either not vigilant when kids are using the equipment or who are not holding the kids accountable for misuse. We need zero tolerance to get the message across, but I think we also need to accept some wear-and-tear as the “cost of doing business.”
Fortunately we are not seeing the degree of damage that you describe, but I am concerned for the longevity of our laptops.
on 4/6/10 1:34 PM, Bryan Thompson wrote:
The subject isn't exactly what I'm looking for, but I'm wondering if people could send me a list of things teachers should fill out each time they use laptop computers in their classroom. We currently have a number of laptop carts, and many more being distributed as soon as we put together the carts. For the last few years, the kids have not been gentle to the computers - pulling of keys, writing on them, etc. We try to have a zero tolerance policy on this - the computer keys are supposed to get replaced the day they get pulled off. Unfortunately that is not the reality. Teachers will either never tell us about abuse, and we find the abuse during our bi-yearly cleanings, or teachers will complain after a computer has almost no keys on them.
If you have sign out sheets for the teachers to check off the condition of computers when they are given out, and received again, I'd really appreciate it. The superintendent is going to make it mandatory for teachers to have filled out.
Winooski School District
Winooski, VT 05404
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