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Preparing Students for the 21st Century and Beyond


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Keywords: Laptops for Class
Subject(s): Social Studies, English/Language Arts
Grades 6 through 8
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Research and Information Fluency
  • Technology Operations and Concepts
View Full Text of Standards
School: Burnett Middle School, San Jose, CA
Planned By: Michael Sullivan
Original Author: Michael Sullivan, San Jose
At my school, access to technology is limited to a weekly visit to a computer lab, as well as a waiting list to utilize a laptop cart, which may or may not have a working class set. And although I am grateful for what we do have, in this day and age, it's not enough anymore. Despite the lack of computer access for students, my district has approved and supported many programs that require regular access to a computer. From taking attendance to student research, we are all becoming more dependent on computers for our daily needs.

And yet, the school/district/state has not made it a priority to equip schools with the technology to prepare students for the 21st century. I am one of many teachers who have had to look to outside sources for funding classrooms.

Also, being concerned with the crazy amount of paper used and thrown out, it is difficult for me to watch so much daily waste. Sure, we mostly recycle paper, but still it is a lot of energy to do so.

Students these days, learn very differently. Normally, they have immediate access to information, are more technically savvy, and respond with more enthusiasm when the information to be learned is presented via technology.

My dream: To complete most tasks on a computer, including

1. To assign, complete, and correct all classwork
2. Give tests and correct.
3. Project-based learning.
4. Write.


Materials: Mobile Labs, Printers, Headsets, Reading, Literacy, Writing, Social Studies
Other Items: 30 Apple Laptop computers (Ipads), $500.00 each, total of $15000.00
30 Headsets, $20.00 each, total of $600.00
30 Extended Warranties on Laptops, $? each