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Re: [seul-edu] [Fwd: BOUNCE seul-edu@seul.org: Non-member submissionfrom [Jim Thomas <jthomas@bittware.com>]]

Right up my alley.

I'm Tech Coordinator for a k-8 district. I came out of the classroom.  Our
linux use in the district is all servers, but. . . 

I spend a lot of time working with teachers on incorporating tech into
their teaching.

> Right now, "what's available" includes Netscape, StarOffice, and a
> handful of other applications (xplns, ktouch, kalcul, simutrans,
> TuxTyping).

If I were planning an intial training. I'd stick to Netscape, StarOffice
and TuxTyping.  Possibly a paint program but not having used one
wouldn't put it on *my* list..  I would also insist that the day be split
-- I'm assuming you have a whole day -- into at least two sessions grouped
by grade level. ie. lower grades in the morning, upper grades in the

> 3-6th grade, I haven't come across anything I feel is very compelling -
> especially in the Math department.  Can anyone make a recommendation on

This is often true.  Especially in primary grades.  Mostly because
computer based math instruction is often a very good set of flash
cards.  flash cards are not compelling.  Writing on the other hand is
really helped by a word processor. 

> Here's my game plan:
> Show them how to log in.
> Show them how to launch StarOffice
> Show them how to launch Netscape
> Explain the web filtering policies, and that they can be custom tailored
> to each teacher's requirements (see footnote [1]).

This is cool.  Having done a bunch of inservices the "let them browse for
something useful" approach has always been the least effective.

I'm assuming your school has outlined some sort of educational
technology objectives for students.  Refer to these.  If not share with 
teachers the National Educational Technology Standards.  you'll find a
summary at 

click on get NETS  documents 
click on Standards for Students.

Then as teachers to share teaching objectives they have for the year
that include writing and research. In our experience the most
enthusiastice implementations of educational technologies have been
teachers helping their students gather and organize info.  research
(web) and writing (staroffice) definitely suffice.

On our site http://www.oxnardsd.org/esc/edtech/ you'll find links to
presentations on integrating tech into the language arts and social
studies curriculum.  

WebQuests can be a very good learning model.


> Point them to The Never-ending Tale (
> http://www.coder.com/creations/tale ).

Neat site and may be helpful for some teacher to teach an objective. But
I'd be wary about neat sites not teacher directed. 

Getting your teachers to direct the learning in your lab should be your
biggest objective.

If you can provide teachers with a simple way to give their students a
list of links.  (I've used link manager tools  you can find a bunch at
cgi-resources.com) So they can quickly get students to sites of their
choice and get them to feel confident using starword you will be a hero in
their eyes -- ok maybe just a good ed technologist.

 > Show them how to add applications to the KDE desktop/menu
> Point them to the seul-edu applications index, with instructions to
> browse for something they might want to try.

You probably know my bias at this point but I think you'll be much better
served by showing your teachers how to use tools available everywhere
vs. linux os specific stuff.

If you give them the tools to create lessons that incoroporate web,
staffoff, they'll be able to work on these lessons from home etc. and
readily share with other less linux enabled schools.

Just my 49 cents worth. 

Good luck

> Any advice on this approach will be greatly appreciated!
> [1] Last year a student was busted for attempting (unsuccessfully) to
> visit an inappropriate web site from one of the Windows PC's in the
> library.  I recently found out that his teacher decided the best way to
> prevent this behavior was to not allow her students to use the
> internet.  When I told her that the web filter could be adjusted to
> disallow access to all but a specific list of sites, she was suprised,
> and indicated that had she known that, she would have responded
> differently.

Dan Kubilos     __\o_ ^
K-8 Tech Coord