Solomon Intro

I took the liberty of rereading the Solomon intro last night with my Snapple in hand and found some interesting things I would like to address. There is one quote in the introduction under the “Technology, Society, and Schools” section that says:

“Economically disadvantaged students, who often use the computer for mediation and basic skills, learn to do what the computer tells them, while more affluent students, who use it to learn programming and toll applications, learn to tell the computer what to do (Solomon, Allen, & Resta, 2003, xviii).”

From what I gather this implies that all low socioecomonic students cannot do anything beyond basic computing. From my own personal experience, this quote is misleading because there are, in fact, students from this social class who can do computer programming. One of the kids at my old high school came from a home with low income was a complete genius when it came to computers and math. He was designing codes of programming in spare time for fun. It just goes to show you that statements like these are not always true.

Under the “School Environment” section, there is a statement that there is stereotype out there that computers and science are not for girls and only for boys. I believe these stereotypes are changing and girls are becoming as knowledgeable, if not more, than boys. During one trip to the computer lab during my student teaching, we were doing some work on the computer with Webquests and the girls were helping out the boys.

I’m sure there are many more examples in the introduction that I have missed, but I’m looking forward to discussing them and many more topics this semester.

Solomon, G., Allen, N.J, & Resta, P. (2003) Toward digital equity: Bridging the divide in education (1st ed). Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon


3 Responses to “Solomon Intro”

  1. The point Solomon was making re disadvantaged students is that the teachers that teach those kids typically use the computer for remedial (drill and kill) activity while on the other end of the spectrum we find teachers using the tools for discovering asteroids.

    The problem I have with this is two fold. One, it overgeneralizes. I’m sure statistically the sampling showed what they report, but I’m not sure what that study looked like. This looks like a “blame the teacher” scenario to me, but I have to wonder how many upper SES classrooms avoid the problem by not using the computer at all — a luxury not every school has. Two, this world of Solomon’s doesn’t exist any more. I’ll write more on that in my blog.

  2. I agree about the strereotype changing. Our gap report shows that we do have a gap between males and females in math and science in my school–the girls outperform the boys!

  3. When I read that statement in the intro, it sounded like kids from low SES homes could not do anything beyond basic computing skills, which is false. I do see the point that Solomon is making in regards to usage of the computer in the classroom on both ends of the spectrum.

    I was curious about the sample size as well and where they where collecting information.

    How can we tip the scales to where more funding gets allocated to lower SES classrooms?

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