odd time signatures

How to make a great topic boring

The class: Technology
The grade: Sixth
The kids: High-achieving honors students

Just imagine the things you could do with this class!

If I were teaching it, they’d get to:

  • Build their own website
  • Learn to blog
  • Create an online calendar to track homework and schedules
  • Learn digital imaging
  • Explore and research a chosen topic
  • Find their way around computer hardware and software and begin to learn key terms for evaluating products

The possibilities are endless.

They could:

  • Create their own online newspaper, each covering topics of individual interest.
  • Build a community and learn how to be good citizens online.
  • Be excited about the possibilities the Internet holds for each individual, beyond the obvious allure of MySpace.
  • Have a mock political campaign and election, complete with photo/audio/video, bloggers, and ‘traditional media’.
  • Create a podcast

Wanna know what the first assignment was?

Write a 500-word essay on the history of computers.

a 500-word essay on the history of computers.

And people wonder why our kids lag? So my girl who has had her own laptop for a year and a half and can put together kick-butt presentations in no time at all, who has her own Flickr account and Blogger blog gets to write an essay on the history of computers — an essay that will be obsolete by the time she’s finished, because as she observed, “By the time something is in the stores something better has already been made.”

This is so frickin’ frustrating.

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Update: Dancergirl has some pretty strong feelings about it, too.

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