Re: Dear Palm
- Hi William
You wrote to me offlist regarding my response to OLPC and Ethiopia, and also about resources for teachers who do not know about computers.
I do not have any connection with OLPC in Ethiopia. I only know what I read in the report.
Regarding an introduction to teachers who have never seen a computer. Perhaps some of the resources we use in Teachers Talking (TT) might help them a little. We have a part of TT which is called the "No-Computer Computer Course" (NC3). The idea in NC3 is that we build from the known to the unknown.
The first idea that we want our course participants to have in NC3 is the idea that there is similarity between phones, and calculators and computers etc (because they all use "computer power"). This is a useful and important idea. It might seem a strange idea too. So we don't start with the idea of computer power.
We start with the idea of the power of a petrol engine - and we get people to think of different examples of petrol engines - motorcycle, lorry, generator, milling machine etc. Hmm - so when we think about it we realise that we have one kind of power (the power of the petrol engine) for many different things. So the idea of many different things - but all with the same kind of power is not a strange idea. Once we have that idea, then we go on to the different examples of things that have "computer power".
Later still you can use mobile phones, or calculators, to illustrate various features of computers - but that is for follow-up, after people have done this little introductory activity.
If you are interested in trying this with your people let me know and I will try to find the A4 sheets for you that I use when I do this little activity with teachers (one sheet with some illustrations and one with teacher notes).