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Computers Have Arrived in… MY Classroom, HELP! Sue Sneyd SACC-ICT for the Swan Service Area WHY ???? Brings world to the classroom Takes the students out into the world while maintaining a safe environment You can learn by doing – it actively engages

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Computers Have Arrived in… MY Classroom, HELP!

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Computers Have Arrived in…

MY Classroom, HELP!

Sue Sneyd

SACC-ICT for the Swan Service Area

WHY ????
  • Brings world to the classroom
  • Takes the students out into the world while maintaining a safe environment
  • You can learn by doing – it actively engages
  • Accommodate different learning styles and pace
  • Encourages life long learning
  • Makes communication with people outside the classroom easy

Why ??? cont.

  • Teaches life skills
  • Saves time on complicated recording so that more time can be spent on analysis
  • Connects parents and school
  • It is great fun
  • It is a requirement in the Curriculum Framework and the Plan for Government Schools 2004-2007
what consider the following statements

If this is correct , we need to change the emphasis in our planning from a software focus to a learning focus.

What????Consider the following statements

“Technology in education is about changing the dynamics, methodologies and outcomesof learning for students”

From Sven Bikerts (1994) “Reflections in the Gutenberg Elegies” Faber & Faber, London

“ Simply choosing a medium of instruction cannot guarantee a learning increase or decrease. It is the instructional method that really make a difference.” Kobus 1997

consider the following sequence when thinking about using ict in your classroom
Consider the following sequence when thinking about using ICT in your classroom
  • What Outcomes do you wish to address with the activity
  • How will using ICT enhance the learning?

(If it won’t don’t be afraid to use another tool to enhance the learning.)

  • Will there be opportunities for collaboration
  • What information sources will be needed
  • What specific skills will be required
  • How will the technology be managed
how some possible suggestions
How???? some possible suggestions
  • Use the technology for personal management tasks – ‘work smarter not harder’
  • Use it as a presentation tool - large screen technology helps here but it is possible with an ordinary screen and small groups
  • Individual learning activities
  • Self and peer assessment tasks
  • To inspire, generate discussions, interact with students in and outside the classroom
  • To support discovery learning
  • Collaborative group work – combine onscreen and off screen tasks
  • Work as a team and share ideas and strategies with other staff members
how you use the technology depends on the level of integration
How you use the technology depends on the level of integration
  • Entry - learning the basics
  • Adoption - Use new technology to support traditional instruction
  • Adaptation - Integrate new technologies into traditional classroom practise. Focus on increased productivity and engagement
  • Appropriation - Focus on cooperative, project-based interdisciplinary work. Incorporating the technology as needed and as one of many tools
  • Invention - Discover new uses for technology tools.Ref:Technology 2000
a suggested process
A suggested process

Highlight possible ICT connections as you work

Establish access strategies and expectations. Games and drill programs are good to use during this time. They allow you to concentrate on the access strategies.

Plan Classroom program

Select the ICT activities, which are manageable in your situation. (Think carefully about an access strategy)

Check ICT skills needed by the children

Develop exercises, which will develop skills as they work towards the planned outcome.

Present the activities to the class.

Prepare instruction sheets your self as a self-tutoring exercise. Use screen dumps to make them easier to follow without large amounts of reading

Prepare any necessary templates


Here are some ideas which have been used in some classrooms.

They are for you to consider and modify to suit your own classroom.

Classroom management changes

with computers in the room so it is worth considering these ideas as you plan.

  • How will students access their work
  • Where will the work be saved
  • Will Cooperative Learning strategies be used
  • Where will they sit – alone, in pairs, in groups
  • How much access to computers will they need
  • What software
  • What will the teacher be doing
  • Will students need to move in and out of the room

Idea 1: Get more students around a single computer

  • By placing the desks in this configuration you can get up to six students to work at the computer.
  • Add a listening post and they can all listen without disturbing the rest of the class.

Idea 2: Move the computer off the wall.

  • Take the computers off the back wall and incorporate it more into the classroom. (Think carefully to ensure all cables are safely placed.)
  • HINT: blue network cables can be made in many different lengths
idea 3 establish an expectation of access for all
Idea 3: Establish an expectation of access for ALL.

If students know they will get their turn and they feel it is fair they are less likely to crowd the computer.

  • Students submit their access needs to a timetable for specific projects
  • Track using the network software
  • Use a roster system
  • A system for ‘just in time access’ (need to ensure no one dominates the computer)
simple flexible roster system ideas
Simple flexible roster system ideas

Names in pockets

Names on pop sticks





Names on coloured sheets

Always allow some “Just in Time Access”


Organise the Computer

  • Insist all files are named in a similar manner -
  • eg. Student’s name then file title
  • .Keep a work in progress file on the desktop - not always possible
  • Make a folder for each child and teach them how to file their work in it - this needs regular reinforcement
establish clear expectations
Establish Clear Expectations
  • How many children at the computer at a time.
  • Where to go for help
  • Respect for the equipment- involve students here
  • Work completed on the computer has equal weighting with other work.
  • Rubrics make expectations for tasks clear to everyone
decide what needs to be learnt then choose the software
Decide what needs to be learnt then choose the software
  • Open ended software allows the students and the teachers to interact with the technology
  • Simulations allow students to experience things in safety
  • The Internet provides vast amounts of information but students need structure and skills to use it efficiently
  • Computer Assisted Learning – needs to be very carefully selected and matched to the child’s needs
  • The best use for the software is often in the teacher’s head not on the back of the box.
skills expectations
Skills Expectations

The only skills everyone needs to learn

-how to open a program

-save to a program

-locate the work they have saved

-print their work

Other skills will develop as they work through authentic tasks on a need to know basis.

Skills ??
  • Be specific – don’t get side tracked
  • Peer tutoring
  • Cheat sheets – posters, class manuals
  • Online tutorials
  • Incidental learning – set time aside to share
  • ‘One I did before’
  • In- class experts – share role around
  • Share skills around the staff room
simple tlc information
Simple TLC information
  • Keep drawing pins, paper clips and staples away from the computer and printer
  • Learn which cables go where in case any come out
  • Have ‘Help Recipe Cards’ near the computer for common problems
  • Use computer wipes to clean the keyboard regularly
  • Don’t use machines with covers half on
  • Keep airflow clear around machines
Don’t wind cords around headphones keep them in a bag
  • Clean up hard drives regularly- check how many photographs are stored there.
  • Always write down error messages so that you can help the technician should one be needed.
  • Keep a record of which computers cause trouble to help decide if they need to be retired.
  • Don’t cover with material which has loose fibres
  • Have monitors with specific responsibilities

Computer Monitor

The computer monitor’s duties are;

1. Turn the computers on and off every day

2. Ensure that the roster is working smoothly but don’t stay at the computer when it isn’t their turn.

3. Keep the computer area tidy

4. Cover the computer at the end of the day

The monitor for this week is:


The Key to using computers effectively in the classroom is

  • Be flexible
  • Have a positive attitude
  • Put the emphasis on the learning – make the technology work for you and your students
  • Most of all. Have fun

Teachers who adopt the new technologies find it:

  • Requires them to think about their teaching strategies
  • Assists in management tasks
  • Increases collaboration with colleagues
  • Assists with the communication with parents
  • Less directed teaching gives more time for interaction with individual students
  • Ref: Summary of Current Research and Evaluation Findings on Technology in Education by John Cradler

To work with a computer in your classroom you don’t need to be an expert all you need is;

A conviction that ICT will improve the learning environment and a willingness to learn along with your students

Technology is always changing, so all other skills will develop as you experiment and ‘have a go’.


A quote to keep in mind

“The business of schools is to produce work that engages students, that is so compelling that students persist when they experience difficulties and that is so challenging that students have a sense of accomplishment, of satisfaction - indeed of delight - when they successfully accomplish the tasks assigned.”Schlechty (1997) Inventing Better Schools



With many thanks to the teachers and students at

Westminster Junior Primary School

Greenmount Primary School

Balga SHS

Midland PS

Cartoons used with permission from Jamie McKenzie and the FNO website

Clipart from Microsoft Office


Where can I get HELP ???

Train a number of

In-class experts

Ensure students

know a variety of

places to get help

Cheat sheets

Peer tutors

Post-it notes