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Old 01-10-2008, 05:49 PM
Jeffrey LePage
 
Default Teaching technology: What is important for K-8 ?

Hello,

Here's my basic question: How do you integrate Linux
workstations into the K-8 Montessori classroom?

Follow-up question: how do you sell this to people
who come from a MS-centric world?

Background
--------------------
The principal at my son's school has decided that we
need to emphasize technology more. They think they
might get a big grant soon. However, they don't
really have a plan for integrating computers into the
classroom.

They're a little bit familiar with Linux. I set up 22
Xubuntu laptops for them (for student use). By all
accounts everyone loves the new laptops.

They seem to want
1) to teach basic mouse/keyboard skills
2) to teach how to use the internet for research
3) to teach how to use common apps like M$ Word.
(yes, I told them about abiword and OpenOffice).
4) to teach touch typing.






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Old 01-10-2008, 07:04 PM
Matt Burkhardt
 
Default Teaching technology: What is important for K-8 ?

I know this is for openSUSE, but the course guides from Novell cover ages 10 through 14 and has sections on both Gnome and KDE, so that should cover Grades 5 though 8.* It's close enough to Kubuntu that you should be able to get some use out of the documentation and instructor's guides.



http://ocw.novell.com/suse-linux-enterprise-desktop/get-ready-for-open-source-suse-linux-enterprise-desktop-book-1/course-materials



There's also a second level course available through Novell, and knowing Montessori, your kids might be ready for it.



I haven't been able to find curriculum and instructor guides for grades K through 4 - so if anyone knows, please let me know.



The best way to sell this to MS-centric folks is to look at the savings.* Most schools get their cost per computer down by between 40% and 75%.* The entire state of Indiana and the city of San Diego are two examples - they both discovered that open source software could save them a good deal of money between lower requirements for hardware, no software licensing fees, no anti-virus software and the increased security available in Linux systems.* They're both aiming for a computer for every child.



In addition, using an open source operating system also gains you all of the great open source software.* For example, there's video editing software, graphics software and audio editing software that is all free - only some of it available for Windows machines.



If you need any additional information, I am focused on K-12 open source for schools and would be happy to help out.* You can also look on my web site (http://www.imparisystems.com) for the Links page - I'm constantly updating it - that only has open source software and copyleft course materials.



Good luck!



On Thu, 2008-01-10 at 10:49 -0800, Jeffrey LePage wrote:


Hello,

Here's my basic question: How do you integrate Linux
workstations into the K-8 Montessori classroom?

Follow-up question: how do you sell this to people
who come from a MS-centric world?

Background
--------------------
The principal at my son's school has decided that we
need to emphasize technology more. They think they
might get a big grant soon. However, they don't
really have a plan for integrating computers into the
classroom.

They're a little bit familiar with Linux. I set up 22
Xubuntu laptops for them (for student use). By all
accounts everyone loves the new laptops.

They seem to want
1) to teach basic mouse/keyboard skills
2) to teach how to use the internet for research
3) to teach how to use common apps like M$ Word.
(yes, I told them about abiword and OpenOffice).
4) to teach touch typing.






__________________________________________________ __________________________________
Looking for last minute shopping deals?
Find them fast with Yahoo! Search. http://tools.search.yahoo.com/newsearch/category.php?category=shopping







--
Matt Burkhardt, MSTM
President
Impari Systems, Inc.
Phone:* (301) 644-3911
mlb@imparisystems.com
http://www.imparisystems.com






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Old 01-11-2008, 02:46 AM
"Tony Yarusso"
 
Default Teaching technology: What is important for K-8 ?

On Thu, 2008-01-10 at 10:49 -0800, Jeffrey LePage wrote:

Hello,

Here's my basic question: How do you integrate Linux
workstations into the K-8 Montessori classroom?

Follow-up question: how do you sell this to people
who come from a MS-centric world?

Background
--------------------
The principal at my son's school has decided that we
need to emphasize technology more. They think they
might get a big grant soon. However, they don't
really have a plan for integrating computers into the
classroom.

They're a little bit familiar with Linux. I set up 22
Xubuntu laptops for them (for student use). By all
accounts everyone loves the new laptops.

They seem to want
1) to teach basic mouse/keyboard skills
2) to teach how to use the internet for research
3) to teach how to use common apps like M$ Word.
(yes, I told them about abiword and OpenOffice).
4) to teach touch typing.






__________________________________________________ __________________________________
Looking for last minute shopping deals?
Find them fast with Yahoo! Search. http://tools.search.yahoo.com/newsearch/category.php?category=shopping




--
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Modify settings or unsubscribe at:
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As far as integrating it into the classroom, we would need to know more about the current classroom, curriculum, etc. to be able to give more than basic ideas on how technology might be used.


However, it is true that money is probably the best way to sell FLOSS to schools in general.* Given that it is a Montessori school though, which encourages students to proceed at their own pace and explore things that personally interest them in addition to the base curriculum.* By putting open-source software in that classroom, you make the differnce between "letting kids use technology" and "providing opportunities for kids to learn technology".* Nobody "learns" by knowing which button to click in MS Word to make text bold - that's just muscle memory pretty much.* By letting them get involved in open-source though, they could learn ANY (or all) of the following skills:

** Teamwork and collaboration - pretty much everything, from the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter to the kernel itself
** Investigative reasoning, thoroughness - finding, troubleshooting, and reporting bugs
** Technical writing (and reading) - documentation

** Artistic design - wallpapers, themes
** "People skills" - mailing list and IRC support
** Creativity, goal setting - feature proposals, formal spec writing
** Programming - the actual coding
...the list goes on.* All except that last one are things that can be applied to _any_ area of life, not just computers, but that can be learned multiple orders of magnitude more effectively from using open-source software rather than proprietary packages.* Clearly, this is _precisely_ what a Montessori school would want to promote, as that is the sort of thing that sets them apart from a traditional school.* I think that this could be a huge selling point if pointed out to the right people, and would strongly encourage you bring it up, strongly and frequently.

--
Tony Yarusso
http://tonyyarusso.com/
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Old 01-11-2008, 03:39 PM
Jeffrey LePage
 
Default Teaching technology: What is important for K-8 ?

Thanks for your input. Your suggestions are really
helpful.

I especially like the Indiana success story. I'll
definitely include that in my pitch.

As far as I can tell, there is one MS-only app that
they absolutely must have: IE7. Every morning the
teachers must login to an IE7-only website to do their
paperwork. This is a district requirement and is
unlikely to change***. There _is_ a wine-based
project (ies4linux) that supports IE6 (and IE7 in
beta), but the license/legal problems are probably
insurmountable.

I thought that perhaps I could sell them on a hybrid
system:
* Each classroom would have a big Edubuntu box.
* The big Edubuntu box would serve as an LTSP server
* The Edubuntu box would have a WinXP virtual machine
for running IE7.
* Optional: we buy a small number of terminal services
client licenses so that the students could connect to
the WinXP VM when necessary.

Another option would be to have a single WinXP server
for the whole school. The teachers could connect via
rdesktop to that server when they need to use IE7.

--------------
*** I think it's a PeopleSoft system. I'm reminded of
Linus's comment about hardware manufacturers that
don't open their specs: Is "I hope you all die a
painful death" too strong?

I started out as a web developer, and I know that all
you really have to do is code to standards and then
every browser will work.






--- ubuntu-education-request@lists.ubuntu.com wrote:

> Send ubuntu-education mailing list submissions to
> ubuntu-education@lists.ubuntu.com
>
> To subscribe or unsubscribe via the World Wide Web,
> visit
>
>
https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-education
> or, via email, send a message with subject or body
> 'help' to
> ubuntu-education-request@lists.ubuntu.com
>
> You can reach the person managing the list at
> ubuntu-education-owner@lists.ubuntu.com
>
> When replying, please edit your Subject line so it
> is more specific
> than "Re: Contents of ubuntu-education digest..."
>
>
> Today's Topics:
>
> 1. Teaching technology: What is important for K-8
> ? (Jeffrey LePage)
> 2. Re: Teaching technology: What is important for
> K-8 ?
> (Matt Burkhardt)
> 3. Re: Teaching technology: What is important for
> K-8 ?
> (Tony Yarusso)
>
>
>
----------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Message: 1
> Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2008 10:49:06 -0800 (PST)
> From: Jeffrey LePage <jeffrey_lepage@yahoo.com>
> Subject: Teaching technology: What is important for
> K-8 ?
> To: ubuntu-education@lists.ubuntu.com
> Message-ID:
> <430995.23041.qm@web36714.mail.mud.yahoo.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=iso-8859-1
>
> Hello,
>
> Here's my basic question: How do you integrate Linux
> workstations into the K-8 Montessori classroom?
>
> Follow-up question: how do you sell this to people
> who come from a MS-centric world?
>
> Background
> --------------------
> The principal at my son's school has decided that we
> need to emphasize technology more. They think they
> might get a big grant soon. However, they don't
> really have a plan for integrating computers into
> the
> classroom.
>
> They're a little bit familiar with Linux. I set up
> 22
> Xubuntu laptops for them (for student use). By all
> accounts everyone loves the new laptops.
>
> They seem to want
> 1) to teach basic mouse/keyboard skills
> 2) to teach how to use the internet for research
> 3) to teach how to use common apps like M$ Word.
> (yes, I told them about abiword and OpenOffice).
> 4) to teach touch typing.
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
__________________________________________________ __________________________________
> Looking for last minute shopping deals?
> Find them fast with Yahoo! Search.
>
http://tools.search.yahoo.com/newsearch/category.php?category=shopping
>
>
>
> ------------------------------
>
> Message: 2
> Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2008 15:04:10 -0500
> From: Matt Burkhardt <mlb@imparisystems.com>
> Subject: Re: Teaching technology: What is important
> for K-8 ?
> To: Jeffrey LePage <jeffrey_lepage@yahoo.com>
> Cc: ubuntu-education@lists.ubuntu.com
> Message-ID: <1199995450.13431.14.camel@mlb-laptop>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
>
> I know this is for openSUSE, but the course guides
> from Novell cover
> ages 10 through 14 and has sections on both Gnome
> and KDE, so that
> should cover Grades 5 though 8. It's close enough
> to Kubuntu that you
> should be able to get some use out of the
> documentation and instructor's
> guides.
>
>
http://ocw.novell.com/suse-linux-enterprise-desktop/get-ready-for-open-source-suse-linux-enterprise-desktop-book-1/course-materials
>
> There's also a second level course available through
> Novell, and knowing
> Montessori, your kids might be ready for it.
>
> I haven't been able to find curriculum and
> instructor guides for grades
> K through 4 - so if anyone knows, please let me
> know.
>
> The best way to sell this to MS-centric folks is to
> look at the savings.
> Most schools get their cost per computer down by
> between 40% and 75%.
> The entire state of Indiana and the city of San
> Diego are two examples -
> they both discovered that open source software could
> save them a good
> deal of money between lower requirements for
> hardware, no software
> licensing fees, no anti-virus software and the
> increased security
> available in Linux systems. They're both aiming for
> a computer for
> every child.
>
> In addition, using an open source operating system
> also gains you all of
> the great open source software. For example,
> there's video editing
> software, graphics software and audio editing
> software that is all free
> - only some of it available for Windows machines.
>
> If you need any additional information, I am focused
> on K-12 open source
> for schools and would be happy to help out. You can
> also look on my web
> site (http://www.imparisystems.com) for the Links
> page - I'm constantly
> updating it - that only has open source software and
> copyleft course
> materials.
>
> Good luck!
>
> On Thu, 2008-01-10 at 10:49 -0800, Jeffrey LePage
> wrote:
>
> > Hello,
> >
> > Here's my basic question: How do you integrate
> Linux
> > workstations into the K-8 Montessori classroom?
> >
> > Follow-up question: how do you sell this to
> people
> > who come from a MS-centric world?
> >
> > Background
> > --------------------
> > The principal at my son's school has decided that
> we
> > need to emphasize technology more. They think
> they
> > might get a big grant soon. However, they don't
> > really have a plan for integrating computers into
> the
> > classroom.
> >
> > They're a little bit familiar with Linux. I set
> up 22
> > Xubuntu laptops for them (for student use). By
> all
> > accounts everyone loves the new laptops.
> >
> > They seem to want
> > 1) to teach basic mouse/keyboard skills
> > 2) to teach how to use the internet for research
> > 3) to teach how to use common apps like M$ Word.
> > (yes, I told them about abiword and OpenOffice).
> > 4) to teach touch typing.
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
>
__________________________________________________ __________________________________
> > Looking for last minute shopping deals?
> > Find them fast with Yahoo! Search.
>
http://tools.search.yahoo.com/newsearch/category.php?category=shopping
>
=== message truncated ===



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Old 01-12-2008, 02:12 AM
"Tony Yarusso"
 
Default Teaching technology: What is important for K-8 ?

On Jan 11, 2008 10:39 AM, Jeffrey LePage <jeffrey_lepage@yahoo.com> wrote:

Thanks for your input. *Your suggestions are really
helpful.

I especially like the Indiana success story. *I'll
definitely include that in my pitch.

As far as I can tell, there is one MS-only app that

they absolutely must have: IE7. *Every morning the
teachers must login to an IE7-only website to do their
paperwork. *This is a district requirement and is
unlikely to change***. *There _is_ a wine-based
project (ies4linux) that supports IE6 (and IE7 in

beta), but the license/legal problems are probably
insurmountable.

I thought that perhaps I could sell them on a hybrid
system:
* Each classroom would have a big Edubuntu box.
* The big Edubuntu box would serve as an LTSP server

* The Edubuntu box would have a WinXP virtual machine
for running IE7.
* Optional: we buy a small number of terminal services
client licenses so that the students could connect to
the WinXP VM when necessary.


Another option would be to have a single WinXP server
for the whole school. *The teachers could connect via
rdesktop to that server when they need to use IE7.

--------------
*** I think it's a PeopleSoft system. *I'm reminded of

Linus's comment about hardware manufacturers that
don't open their specs: Is "I hope you all die a
painful death" too strong?

I started out as a web developer, and I know that all
you really have to do is code to standards and then

every browser will work.






--- ubuntu-education-request@lists.ubuntu.com wrote:

> Send ubuntu-education mailing list submissions to

> * * * ubuntu-education@lists.ubuntu.com
>
> To subscribe or unsubscribe via the World Wide Web,
> visit

>
>
https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-education
> or, via email, send a message with subject or body

> 'help' to
> * * * ubuntu-education-request@lists.ubuntu.com
>
> You can reach the person managing the list at
> * * *
ubuntu-education-owner@lists.ubuntu.com
>
> When replying, please edit your Subject line so it
> is more specific
> than "Re: Contents of ubuntu-education digest..."

>
>
> Today's Topics:
>
> * *1. Teaching technology: What is important for K-8
> ? (Jeffrey LePage)
> * *2. Re: Teaching technology: What is important for
> K-8 ?
> * * * (Matt Burkhardt)

> * *3. Re: Teaching technology: What is important for
> K-8 ?
> * * * (Tony Yarusso)
>
>
*Regardless of the approach you use for the short-term workaround, it is critical that you also work very hard to reach a _solution_ - ie, you need to convince the district to switch to a functional system that does not require IE7.* That of course is a whole new kettle of fish, but equally important.* Note that if it is a publicly funded school, laws such as Section 508: Amendment to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 could come into play here.


--
Tony Yarusso
http://tonyyarusso.com/
--
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Old 01-12-2008, 02:45 PM
Jeffrey LePage
 
Default Teaching technology: What is important for K-8 ?

I'm intrigued by Tony Yarusso's comment (see below).

As I understand it, section 508 basically says that
Federal agencies have to make their electronic and
information technology accessible to people with
disabilities.

Is an IE7-only website necessarily incompatible with
section 508? Just because the site refuses to play
nice with firefox doesn't mean that it won't play nice
with a screen reader. (I haven't tested this
particular site for 508 compliance.)

Has anyone ever heard of using 508 to force firefox
compatibility?


Tony Yarusso wrote:

>Regardless of the approach you use
>for the short-term workaround, it is
>critical that you also work very hard
>to reach a _solution_ - ie, you
>need to convince the district to
>switch to a functional system that does not
>require IE7. That of course is a whole
>new kettle of fish, but equally
>important. Note that if it is a
>publicly funded school, laws such as
>Section 508: Amendment to the
>Rehabilitation Act of 1973 could come
>into play here.


__________________________________________________ __________________________________
Looking for last minute shopping deals?
Find them fast with Yahoo! Search. http://tools.search.yahoo.com/newsearch/category.php?category=shopping

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