I loved our readings this week – I feel like I’ve been waiting to talk about issues of equity and access since the beginning of the course! I’m wondering, though, how best to address these issues in writing this week – I feel like the ideas and worries are so big, and the solutions so elusive, that I don’t even know where to start. The idea of the second digital divide – the notion that it’s not just the access to technology, but the ways in which we use the technology that is creating a rift between the haves and have-nots – was really salient to me, and rang true to me in a way that few of our other readings have. As you may know from my past blog posts, I’m a big proponent of media and information literacy, which not only encompasses how we locate and evaluate information, but how we use it – and accompanying media tools – thoughtfully and effectively. This second digital divide is essentially a gap in media literacy, which can be traced back to the the quality of an individual’s learning experiences with computers (both at home and in the classroom). Thus I’m puzzling this week: how can we address this is schools? When I think back to my own students, I had those who were in both camps, and those who were somewhere in-between – and meanwhile, I only had three computers in my classroom, and only myself to oversee students in the lab. Students did have a technology special once a week, but I don’t know that that’s necessarily enough – and that still isn’t giving students sustained time with technology, let alone time to work with the single adult in the room. None of this is to mention the kinds of programs students are using in school – which vary wildly depending on school budgets, philosophies, etc.
I know I haven’t fully fleshed out the issue (not by a long shot) – and I apologize for not presenting it better – I’m rather swamped this week and I think my brain is starting to short-circuit! All the same, I’m wondering if other people are thinking about this as well? Help me work through the muddle!