Published on Brock University (http://www.brocku.ca)
For the second time this month students from the Aboriginal Bachelor of Education program were provided an opportunity to familiarize themselves with the XO laptop designed by the One Laptop per Child program – part of the Belinda Stronach Foundation.
Director of the OLPC Canada, Jennifer Martino, was back in the classroom on July 23 to help the students further understand and utilize their laptops; this time in the form of creating a lesson plan.
“The idea of the laptop isn’t to replace what you do,” she reiterated from her first visit. “It’s a tool that can be used as a different way of thinking when it comes to creating your lesson plans.”
Martino noted that having the laptops in the classroom creates a lot of excitement – especially for the students – but, due to curriculum requirements, can sometimes get pushed aside or used only during free time, so finding ways to incorporate them into daily lessons is important.
During portions of the morning in-service, Martino had the class break into groups and dissect sample lesson plans, sharing what they did and did not like about how they were set up. This assignment was in preparation for the students eventually creating their own lesson plan later in the morning.
“Use whatever programs on the laptop you want, any materials that you will have available to you and be as creative as you want,” said Martino when instructing the students on creating their lesson plan. “But, make sure you use the laptop as a tool in some capacity in your lesson plan.”
The students, again in groups, chose a topic to create a lesson plan around and worked on incorporating the programs the laptops have to offer. In presenting their lesson plan, the students identified the subject areas they covered as well as programs on the laptops they would incorporate; such as the chat function, the create a cartoon strip program and the matching program.
By providing the training to future teachers now, the goal of the partnership between the OLPC and the Tecumseh Centre for Research and Education is to help prepare future teachers with the knowledge and understanding of how to incorporate this new technology into their class as soon as they arrive.
For more information on the Tecumseh Centre and its programs please visit http://www.brocku.ca/education/departmentsandcentres/tecumseh
For more information on the OLPC program please visit their web site www.OLPCCanada.com