Students: sorry for the confusion…but please start your AP Issues BLOG with your INTRO BLOG post (sample below), then come back to comment on at least 5 other issues, and to REPLY to those who comment on your own issue (all with claims, well reasoned with valid support)
POSTED AT 02:28 PMEQ (at least ONE Essential Question): Do laptops in the classroom really improve student academic performance?
BACKGROUND: Some believe student issued laptops afford new opportunities in educational settings that redesign learning as we know it (laptops help student learn more accurate, current material faster, with tools more familiar to this information age and the careers that follow for them). Yet, others perceive laptops as costly distractions that disrupt focused learning; studies show the human brain retains knowledge less effectively if reading digitally than in print (“cognitive overload” caused by digital input and reading causes slower processes and less retention (Nick Carr, Pulitzer Prize winning journalist on researched technology implications in education ).
CLAIM: While laptops have clear benefits for students, they should be significantly limited because they distract students from complex content and instruction provided by teacher-experts, they actually reverse a student’s ability to comprehend and retain information from what was learned digitally; studies show that the most successful schools are those that are technologically poor (having at most, an overhead projector, mostly blackboards and chalk, if anything at all).
SUPPORT: “Classrooms in countries with the highest-performing students contain very little tech wizardry, generally speaking [Korea, Finnland]. They look, in fact, a lot like American ones—circa 1989 or 1959. Children sit at rows of desks, staring up at a teacher who stands in front of a well-worn chalkboard” “In most of the highest-performing systems, technology is remarkably absent from classrooms,” says Andreas Schleicher, a veteran education analyst for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development…In Finland, the schools have almost nothing in common with the pressure-cooker classrooms of Korea. Finnish students start going to school a year later than American kids, and they do less homework on average. Standardized tests are rare. And yet, in 2006, Finnish teenagers ranked first in math and science among 30 OECD countries. The United States ranked 25th in math and 21st in science. (“Brilliance in a Box What do the best classrooms in the world look like?” By Amanda Ripley (Slate.com)