Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Where Different Works!

Radio 2 PresentersThe current advertising campaign for BBC Radio 2 has the tagline:
"Radio 2 - Where different works"
It highlights how all the different Radio 2 presenters and programmes come together to create a unique radio station with something for everyone. I was listening to it in my car tonight and my mind wandered to consider whether we could say:
"The classroom - Where different works."
There is perhaps more awareness now of the importance of differentiation (except at Jordanhill where we tell everyone else to do it, but resolutely refuse to practice what we preach) but what about in the computer lab?

In theory, the computer should be a great tool for helping to provide differentiation as it can (so the theory goes) give patient and appropriate support in a manner that suits the individual learner. Is that the reality? I suspect that often the answer is no. Why am I pessimistic? Partly because of the recent rush of primary schools installing computer labs so that the whole class can all do the same thing at the same time! Where different works!?

Is the idea of computers helping with differentiation a myth? Do we have good examples we can show of computers being used to meet the differing needs of individuals even in a whole class/one lab situation?

Can we show that computer labs are a place where different works?

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