I was thinking about the reply to my blog that asked at what age do I think that children should start on the computer and do they need to start in kindergarten to learn the skills. In my experience children in kindergarten and grade one will not choose the computer if given free choice of what they want to do. This age seems to prefer other activities and it is usually teacher directed and not child directed when they have to use the computer at this age. Granted there are some children that will want to be on the computer but not many. Will they be deprived and behind other children, if not teacher directed towards the computer, at this young age? Personally, I don't believe so.
To me that is like saying - "if you don't start reading blue prints" in grade one, then you will never be a carpenter. Or if you are not using a camera on manual settings by the time you hit grade one - then you will never be a photographer.
Children will still know how to use the computer and have all the skills they need for the future even if they are not using the computer in kindergarten and grade one.
Really, I am not against technology - honest - and I think Mrs. Cassidy's class is the coolest ever and being in her class and watching the kids work on the computer is amazing. I would love to intern in her class! But I would sneak a book or two in there to read to the children.
Here is a question fellow classmates: If we want student directed classrooms and our grade one students prefer other activites over the computer - are we going to accept that? Or are we going to step in as a teacher director and sit them down in front of that computer?
We all know there is never enough time to do everything in the classroom so - is reading on the computer in grade one the same as having a book read to you? Would the time be better spent reading to your students or having them on the computer?
Maybe my experiences are different than yours but the young children I have been around will choose to have a book read to them over going on the computer.
What are your thoughts?