Third Graders Film Their Classmates During Readers Theater
In step #3 of this trail you read an article written by UB's Dr. Clements that explored the idea of using computers with young students in Mathematics. We begin this section of the trail with another research article that examines the notion that kids can help each other learn while using computers. There are many reasons teachers do not use technology during their instruction. Teachers may believe that technology diminishes the emotional relationship between teacher and student (Cuban, 1986, Cuban, 1993) and/or neglects the cognitive needs of young children (Cordes & Miller, 2000). Teachers may also favor the textbook over teaching with technology because they may believe that the textbook is the authority on content (Anderson, 2002). Many teachers do not use technology because they did not feel comfortable teaching with it unless their students and themselves are properly trained (Yerrick & Johnson, 2009). It is to this last point that we begin the next section of the trail.

For those teachers who don't love technology, it seems that there is always something new to learn and they feel hopeless trying to keep up to date. As a person who has been teaching with technology since 1993, I can attest to this frustration. The intention of this multi-modal wikipage is to create a place where students can practice skills and learn new strategies at their own pace with links that you have provided. This wikipage is supposed to empower children and you, because you will be able to walk around your room and sit with kids and conduct mini-clinical interviews with students who you see are struggling. While you work with small groups of students or individuals, the other students are able to help themselves. But wait, some of you are screaming, what happens if the technology breaks down or kids don't know how to use the computer or you don't (like when you did not know how to take a screen shot and post it to the wikipage)?

I would like to help you reframe your thinking about this fear because kids can help kids learn. I see it in my classroom; I see it everywhere adults get out of their way and guide their learning. If you doubt me, watch this short video presented by Dr. Sugata Mitra from India who will show you how poor children in India learned how to use a PC without any adult help (Some of you may remember this from another trail).

Still skeptical because this was not in a school environment? Read this article by Freeman and Somerindyke (2001) who describe how preschool children help each other use computers in their classroom. Many children come to the classroom as "experts" on using parts of the computer which may surprise those of you who believe YOU have to teach kids everything.

Now that you have watched and read about kids learning from kids, let's go build the multi-modal wikipage that will support independent, differentiated and multi-modal learning, starting with the identification of standards.

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