OLPCsb: Deploying XO Laptops in USA Classroom (Pt 5)


Well, OLPC News community, here it is - the 5th installment of the OLPCsb series on our pilot launch for US classrooms. Thanks for reading so far!

  • 4.) Documentation - Creating a Resource Model:

With our international program still developing, technological kinks being worked out, and our local teacher and University students still exploring and researching ways for the XO's to be integrated into the California 3rd grade curriculum, we have not yet done extensive documentation and created a resource model. We have been conducting sit-in observations of the class, and working with the teacher to understand his needs, concerns, and ideas for the future.

Learning in Santa Barbara

We are also in the process of working with faculty in the Graduate School of Education at UCSB to develop a comprehensive observational study that will be used to evaluate and asses the impact of having XO's in the classroom, the ways that the XO's are being applied to the curriculum, and the impact of having an international partnership between children.

In short, we have been keeping tab of what's currently going on in the classroom, and in the next school year a more formal assessment will be conducted on a full year of XO's in the classroom. There are a number of questions we may have the ability to answer, or at least conduct an observational study on.

I'd actually like to open it up to the readers, since you are all highly active in the OLPC community- if you have been following these posts, what kinds of questions do you have? What do you think we should be observing in our studies? What do you think we have the ability to measure or asses in regards to deploying laptops in US classrooms, and linking them up with students abroad? How can we essentially show the positive effects of what we are doing? I would love to hear your questions and ideas!!

So, with our classroom taking a short summer break, we will not have much to report in the coming months in terms of in class experiences. Yet we will nonetheless be working hard to have a great program in place for next year's 3rd grade class, and look forward to what we and the students will discover when they get back! We encourage your feedback, questions, comments, and ideas regarding our program and would appreciate your insight! Please email us at [email protected] and we'll get right back to you!

Thanks again for following these posts. I hope they have in some way inspired you, made you think of new things, or motivated you to initiate an OLPC related pilot or project of your own!

While my involvement in OLPCsb is slowly shifting, as I have graduated and moved to work with another nonprofit focusing on utilizing new technology and media for good (www.causecast.org), I will still be an active part of the community and group, and look forward to seeing its progression.

I'd like to further thank Wayan and the OLPCnews community for being supportive of our mission, and allowing us the opportunity to share our story and gain valuable feedback from all of you!

Jonathan Kalan

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