[Edu-sig] OLPC (was FYI: PataPata postmortem link)
ajsiegel at optonline.net
Wed Nov 29 14:39:39 CET 2006
Bert Freudenberg wrote:
>On Nov 29, 2006, at 13:00 , Arthur wrote:
>>I fear not only that OLPC is turning into a toy, but a toy for the
>>wrong follks, folks who have enough toys, rooms full of them,
>>their toys, blinking and whizzing hynoptic.
>Would you agree that the software (and not the greenish toy-like
>hardware) would make all the difference between that little machine
>being a toy and it being a serious platform for education? Why, then,
>are so few folks working on actual educational software for it? So
>far, you can count the specifically educational activities on the
>OLPC on one hand. Even if you lost most fingers.
>- Bert -
Not sure what are saying. Just checked my facts:
Squeak, and Scratch on top of Squeak seemed to be the done deal
You wouldn't be implying - God forbid - that this is not state of the
art, best practices, educational software.
There is a team, and that team has a point of view:
The responsibilities of this group include selecting suitable
educational software, (with an understanding of memory consumption of
the software). Ebook and book authoring technology belongs here. Other
issues include teacher preparation, migration of exisiting content, a
framework for new content development, school-server technologies, a
"Kids Corps" for maintenance.
/Who:/ Walter Bender, David Cavallo, Seymour Papert
<http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Seymour_Papert>, Brian Smith, Alan Kay
<http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Alan_Kay>, K12LTSP(?), Mitchel Resnick,
Roseli de Deus Lopes
There is also a need for basic tools for programming and authoring. LOGO
<http://wiki.laptop.org/go/LOGO>, OpenOffice, Dia, TuxPaint, etc. all
should be considered.
However, let's keep in mind that there is a difference between
Edutainment and and Playful Learning. And we want Playful Learning
instead of Edutainment
<http://www.media.mit.edu/%7Emres/papers/edutainment.pdf>. Also, we
don't want kids to be punished by rewards
<http://www.alfiekohn.org/teaching/pbracwak.htm>. Some understanding of
constructionist <http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Constructionist> educational
philosophy will be useful for developers.
I don't argue the merits of constructivitist educational philosophy.
And I don't like punishment, much less punishment by rewards.
Just that I see these matters as having next to nothing to do with
electronics. More than nothing to do with electronics.
That the Wizards think they can construct this reality electronically is
not only absurd, in my view, but an absolute - almost tragic -
distraction from more coherent and human to human based efforts toward
these espoused ends. Which I might see in the end to have maybe a 4%
I guess as I grow up I am less and less impressed by the expression of
good intentions. Great intentions tend to have great effects almost
exclusively in the hands of less than great egos - is what life
experience seems have informed me. Not sure those kind of folks are
well represented by the team assembled here. Certainly, they would not
be noticed, or have influence if they were.
Its all just more of the same. The non-electronic component, beating
the best of intentions.
Other than what Alan Kay, and his posse, says he has accomplished in the
field of education, what has Alan Kay demostrably accomplished in the
field of education.
How many days has he spent in a classroom? He has gotten to the top of a
field he has never even entered. Gotten there electronically. True
wizardry, to be sure.
This team is quite silly, when you look at it, deconstructed from my
perspective at least.
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