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Re: [K12OSN] target audience

I disagree. In primary grades, we don't need young children sitting in front of a CRT all day. What they should be learning to do is read...FROM A BOOK. That's why we have libraries with books in them. I know children in my (very wealthy) school district who won't touch a book now, but will sit in front of a PlayStation2 all day, since they learn in school "oh, I'm supposed to sit in front of a computer all day." Many kids from such "computerized" schools can barely write longhand, but boy, do they know their keyboard shortcuts! That's not what we need to be teaching our kids.

I agree with Paul Nelson in that we need to be teaching kids how to use computers as tools, not video game machines that say "Good Job!", which is what Reader Rabbit, et. al. are. I'd rather see kids learning how to use a Web browser to do research on, say, information about the Sioux Nation or the Navajo Code Talkers, for a report that they write LONGHAND. If they cannot write longhand, then we know that's an area where they need practice. Once they're decent at longhand, then (say, 6th grade) we can get them into learning how to use a word processor to write some reports. Actually doing the reading of books and the writing of sentences on paper--especially in the younger years--is how you learn how to read and write, not by staring at a CRT.

OK, then you say, "well, what about knowing how to type?" If we want to teach them to touch-type--again, I speak from experience--they should learn this on an actual typewriter for a semester. Yes, a typewriter, one with the keys blanked out. That's how you get accurate. It was only when I was forced to use a typewriter that I actually learned how to touch-type well (thank you, thank you, Miss Creasia!).

For some things, computers are wonderful. For others, nothing beats the old-fashioned way. Don't let lack of Reader Rabbit for GNU/Linux be an impediment to implementing K12LTSP.


Richard Ingalls wrote:

I agree with Peter Newell on this one! Linux needs something comparable to "Reader Rabbit" and all the "Jump Start" programs for younger students. At this point, I only use LTSP for the older students at my PreK - 8th grade school (which means, I only use it for a "writing lab" for grades 5 - 8).
Richard K. Ingalls
Technology Coordinator
Glenwood R-8 School, West Plain, MO
(417) 256-4849

    ----- Original Message -----
    *From:* Peter Newall <mailto:Peter Newall2 btopenworld com>
    *To:* k12osn redhat com <mailto:k12osn redhat com>
    *Sent:* Wednesday, January 22, 2003 3:34 AM
    *Subject:* [K12OSN] target audience

I have been evaluating the K12LTSP and have been pleased with the
solution. It seems the key to getting it adopted is the programs
available. While email, word processing, surfing the net and art
packages such as GIMP are just what children need in secondary
schools there seems a lack of suitable applications for primary
age children 5 to 11 years old. For K12LTSP to succeed in primary
education it needs the range of applications to compete against
the MS offerings.
Any opinions or suggestions greatly appreciated.
Peter Newall

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