Academic journal article T H E Journal (Technological Horizons In Education)

MLTI Transforms Teaching and Learning at Freeport Middle School

Academic journal article T H E Journal (Technological Horizons In Education)

MLTI Transforms Teaching and Learning at Freeport Middle School

Article excerpt

Last summer, a truck arrived at Freeport Middle School in Freeport, Maine, and unloaded more than 130 laptops--one for every seventh-grade teacher and student. What had seemed to be an unlikely pipe dream months before suddenly was a reality.

The seventh-grade teachers were eager to get involved in this project, even though they were not sure how this would all work out. As a group, they are successful in teaming and providing a great deal of support for each other. They had tried new things in the past, such as developing interdisciplinary units, but the arrival of laptops was another example of where their teaming could be a strong, supportive force.

Our principal immediately recognized that the newness of the one-to one computing concept could be stressful in the absence of experience with it. He hastened to make it clear that he did not expect teachers to use laptops with students every minute of class. A more reasonable expectation was that each teacher should develop one classroom unit using laptops by the end of the first quarter. If there had been stress, this recognition eased it. So did the teachers' sense of teamwork coupled with administrative support of risk-taking in the interest of better teaching and learning. By the end of the first two weeks, every teacher was using the laptops during class in ways that established a growing comfort level for all, while allowing them to not lose sight of the importance of content in the presence of exciting technology.

The targeted use of laptops grew throughout the rest of the school year. Students were conducting research in the classroom instead of having to schedule time in the library. They were writing and editing papers, as well as developing oral presentations supported by slide presentations. …

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