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Laptops in the classroom - do they help spread the useage of ICT in the curriculum?

Discussion in 'Computing and ICT' started by jonholmes, Mar 3, 2011.

  1. Dear all,
    Looking to buy wireless network and trolley of laptops.
    Is there any evidence that going down this road helps spread the usage of ICT / independent learning across the curriculum? We presently have two ICT suites and they're booked out 70% of the time. I am hoping that giving staff and pupils even more access and therefore really embed ICT into their teaching and learning.
    Any expericence/ evidence here would be very welcome and a real help with getting funds approved.

    Many thanks
     
  2. Dear all,
    Looking to buy wireless network and trolley of laptops.
    Is there any evidence that going down this road helps spread the usage of ICT / independent learning across the curriculum? We presently have two ICT suites and they're booked out 70% of the time. I am hoping that giving staff and pupils even more access and therefore really embed ICT into their teaching and learning.
    Any expericence/ evidence here would be very welcome and a real help with getting funds approved.

    Many thanks
     
  3. Exactly the same situation here. We want to get a 30 netbooks and run them wirelessly. We are in an old school and have had black spot issues in the past. We are going to get a company called Stone to come and do a quote. ny advice from schools who are doing this successfully greatly appreciated.
     
  4. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    I've spent most of my time as an ICT specialist using fixed workstations and I very much prefer them. Back in the late 90s I spent a lot of time working with Psion/Acorn palmtop computers which were then cited as the ultimate in portability, and the problems we had then are the problems we get now with laptops, namely fragility, neglect outside the ICT suite, and battery life.

    I've worked with laptops on supply and I'm appalled at how the computers are often maltreated by students and neglected by staff outside of specialist ICT lessons. The batteries are rapidly wrecked through incorrect use, ie not allowing them to discharge properly before recharging, and it's very common to find a trolley full of laptops only partially charged up because nobody'd bothered to see if they were all plugged into their rechargers at the end of the previous lesson. Also, if batteries are already worn out it becomes increasingly difficult to recharge them between one lesson booking and the next if the classroom doesn't have multiple plug sockets. Trailing extension leads create all manner of potential safety issues too.

    I'd wait until your ICT suites are 100% booked before committing major funds during a public sector funding crisis, then spend the money on a fixed and bookable cross-curricular suite with more (and cheaper) workstations. I'm very sceptical about portable computing in a school environment and I've worked in ICT since the early 80s. It looks good in the brochure but the reality can be a major pain in the bum if you're in charge of it.
     
  5. gavcradd

    gavcradd New commenter

    I agree with the above poster. We have a trolley of 16 laptops that have been in place for a few years now. We get, and have always got, problems whenever they're used. Some won't log on to the wireless network, some are never charged, some don't have the software on that you expect, etc. They're also treated appallignly by the students. Keys are pulled off and stolen, CD drives damaged, etc, when no problems occur with the desktops.
    I would save you money to kit out another fixed ICT suite before jumping into getting a set of laptops.
     
  6. Jessy1234

    Jessy1234 New commenter

    As an individual user, I mainly use my laptop at home with the Adapter on all the time. I tried it without the power supply and my battery lasted for thirty minutes. I have had my laptop for three years now and it works, however I would not lend it to anyone.
    Imagine if the same student used the same laptop which was shared by thirty other students and the student saved his work on the laptop then the next day realizes that someone has stolen it, the student would be in tears because all his and other peoples work is on the missing laptop.
    I would suggest you to equip another room with Workstations (Personal Computers) allowing members of staff from other subject areas to book the room. If the school had allot of funding I would recommend implementing two workstations per room, But that would be an expensive recommendation.

     
  7. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    ???? You have this thing called a file server.

    Have to echo other posters. If you have the room then go for desktops, laptops are poorly treated by students (not always intentionally I should add). If you do go laptop route then you need a budget to allow for damage and replacement batteries and don't even think about much beyond a 3 year lifespan.
     

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