Friday, February 13, 2009

Come along or be dragged: the future is now!

Here we go, Spot! You're yanking at me...pulling that leash of yours. You mean you don't want to read those dusty old books off the shelf like I did? (Yours aren't dusty and you sure have lots of them!) You're sick of sitting in that desk? What? I thought you loved that hard chair and the stack of books you lug around all day. They're all your earthly possessions! I remember when you went off to kindergarten with that brand new backpack of yours. But now you're complaining, you don't want to carry those books, you don't want to sit in that chair. You can't seem to find any of those papers!

Oh, Spot...we've gotta rethink your plan. What if I had a small round table with a lap top set up for you? You'd have all your friends sitting around you in tables of 3 or so. You could access all of my lesson on line and then spend your day researching a question like...what is the quality of the water in the little stream that runs along the edge of the school property? Or maybe we could even bring back samples and evaluate them under the microscope, take small snapshots of them...I don't know, Spot--just shoutin' that out there to you. Maybe you might have a few ideas about how to structure the lesson. What if all the Spots out there designed their own lessons? After we finish our research, we could go online and share our results with our cyber-friends, skyping them in Ukraine or Australia, or even Malaysia.  We'd organize questions first and then more snail-mailed pen pals--we could talk and learn with each other right there in that very minute!

After that, we'd write it all down...pencil/pen and paper or laptop. Your choice! But then, we could even publish it on our blogspace for everyone including your mom, your dad, your grandma in North Dakota...or even President Obama! We'd squeeze in a good, long chunk of math in there and we'd kindle up a good book too! There you go, Spot! You've met all your standards. What? You don't even want recess? Okay, well...Spot. Let's call it a day anyway. We're both dismissed! Now that's what I call a 21st Century kinda day! I'll bet I could even let you off that leash! One more thing, Spot...those tests? Remember all the tests you used to take? Some day, some smart person or puppy will come up with a program that will evaluate your work as you produce it...yup, right there on your laptop! When that day comes, Spot, we'll both LAP it up!


  1. What a great idea! Go for it. I'll volunteer as a helper. However, I must confess I am a little disappointed you didn't mention the 'chunk' of science time. On the other hand, that could be combined with math since math is the language of science. Maybe we should start a charter school!!!

  2. Let's do it, George! I'm serious! And the science? Well, what do you think sloshing around in all that water was??? Science is one of those obvious things that is all pervasive--when you form a question, you've entered into a scientific exploration.

    Tommy is coming in to talk to lead my kids in PTI type current events. C'mon in once in a can become our Bill Nye!!