Vast Active Library and Information Science blog. From a recent library science graduate in Wellington, New Zealand. A focus on reference and current awareness tools and issues, especially free, web-based resources.

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Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Arizona School Will Not Use Textbooks - Yahoo! News  
Via Techdirt comes this story, wherein an Arizona school has given up textbooks and will instead supply children with laptops and "use electronic and online articles as part of more traditional teacher lesson plans".

Great way to give kids the (incorrect) idea that everything is available online, I guess. I'm not filled with confidence at their prospects for success, given that even the superintendent of the School District is unsure of how the switch will work.

I'd also question the technological determinism of the claim that "we visited other schools using laptops. And at the schools with laptops, students were just more engaged than at non-laptop schools". That's a correlation. It's not causality. Off the top of my head, I can think of at least one other explanation for the difference - kids who have access to laptops at school are probably attending school in a wealthy district, and have other advantages at home. The presence of the laptops, and the engagement of the students, could be explained by their background, rather than the laptops themselves causing greater engagement.