sat morn w/ tnellen

Sat, Aug 7, 1999
9:00 - 9:45 Computer-Mediated Teaching

What does it mean to be computer-mediated?

computer assisted
computer aided
computer centered

In the end then it is learner centered, driven, interactive. It allows us to tap into what is already known by the learner. That means we can start on the learners level, not at the classes' collective starting place. see KAPPAN May 98 pages 655-670 in particular.
Names like Piaget, Vygotsky, Feuerstein, Gardner, Sternberg, Perkins, Costa, Goleman, and Cole are thrown around. But the important thing for me is how each of these supports the idea that we as teacher should mediate and not lecture or in the more colloquial each supports "Don't be sage on the stage, be the guide by the side."

Retention Chart

This presentation is contrary to the chart, it is more of a lecture than anything else. However, you have the URL, and you can at your leisure go through it, stop and read the KAPPAN articles, play with some of the software, explore the links the substance of the "lecture" on your own terms. Herein is the greatest advantage of the computer. You can put your notes away, write down only the URL to this page, listen and begin to think of how you can apply this to what you already do. You don't have to remember anything I say, just see how it applies to what you already know, what you want to do, and return to it as often as you need to to complete your tasks as educator.

Now let's take a quick tour of some applications of what I mean by computer mediated teaching as demonstrated in computer assisted instruction software.


For me, computer-mediated means I'm not alone in the classroom. Consider our profession. We work in isolation. We work alone in the classroom with closed doors. Other professions do not work alone. Consider the politician and hir aides, the lawyers and hir clerks, the doctor and hir nurses, the athlete and hir support staff, the entertainer, and so on. The teacher is a solitary worker. The computer changes all of that. So I see technology as the panacea to educators.


Peer review

Computer mediated teaching is our way of collaborating, working in teams, breaking out of our isolation booths and working with others. We are a profession which promotes collaboration, equity, and working well with others; and yet we don't practice our theory. The computer provides the way to practice our theory. If anyone is interested in writing about their practical theory, please look at an online journal a NYC public school colleague and I edit, called Pr@cticalTheory.