Session 8- Barber, D and Cooper, L (2012) Chapter 2: Web 2.0 and Barriers in the Primary Classroom

The chapter begins by talking about how a lot of teachers in primary schools feel that teaching ICT is problematic due to their lack of knowledge and confidence in teaching this subject. I believe this to be true, due to the lack of ICT I had witnessed in my first placement in Year 1 and my my first placement in Year 2- my class teacher in Year 2 also admitted that he was glad he had an ICT specialist as a student because his knowledge and confidence of ICT was so low! I think that if the government are going to give so much money to schools for new technology, then they should also put money into the teaching of the new technology and programmes for teachers so that they become more practical, confident and efficient teachers of this subject!

I also believe that teachers will feel humiliated if the children in their class are more knowledgeable with ICT than they are, but they should see this as an advantage and some motivation to gain more knowledge in this field of the curriculum. I would personally see it as an advantage due to the fact that the teacher can use the children with the most knowledge and understanding of ICT to support the less-abled children in the class. When I taught an ICT lesson during placement I got the children to work in pairs, and I put the children in pairs by choosing a child who was very abled in ICT and paired them with a less-abled child so that the less-abled child was well supported; I also made sure that both of the children were contributing with the task during the lesson when I was walking around the classroom, to make sure that the more-abled child was not doing all of the work!

I completely agree with the fact that there is a danger that children may come into contact with strangers and then give out their personal information, but teachers need to ensure that children are thoroughly taught about the risks and the dangers during PSHCE lessons. I witnessed my teacher teaching, and taught my own PSHCE lessons on Internet safety whilst I was on placement. Every child was able to tell me what they should not do on the Internet and they all seemed to have an understanding of what questions they can and cannot answer if ‘strangers’ communicate with them, and who they should talk to if ‘strangers’ are communicating with them. I believe it all comes down to the teaching of Internet safety in school and at home, and the monitoring of children’s Internet use.

The chapter also mentions the debate about how long children should spend on the computer and on the Internet. Whilst I was growing up I spent a lot of time playing outside and doing activities which were outside. However I also spent a lot of time playing games online and playing video games on my PlayStation. I believe that both have advantages, especially playing outside as it is healthier, however the video games I played on a console had many benefits as well, including, improving your hand-eye coordination skills and also educational benefits such as playing games for learning information.

I strongly believe that ICT brings many benefits and advantages to children’s learning and although there may be many barriers in the primary classroom, there are always ways to overcome these barriers, such as gaining support from external or internal resources/expertise to use ICT effectively in the classroom.


4 thoughts on “Session 8- Barber, D and Cooper, L (2012) Chapter 2: Web 2.0 and Barriers in the Primary Classroom

  1. Interesting point you make about teachers delegating tasks to more able children. A clear shift in role is evident here, but should teachers be surprised given that most children are digital natives and are exposed to different forms of technology outside of school?#

    • Hi Mukta, I do not think that teachers should be surprised that the majority of children are digital natives as I believe that they are presented with different forms of technology outside of school all the time. However I do believe that teachers should use this as motivation to improve their subject knowledge so they are able to support their the best way that they can! For example, with ‘computing’ being introduced to the new National Curriculum (2014), teachers should ensure that they receive training in teaching this area of the curriculum to ensure that they teach it efficiently and have more experience than the pupils in their class.

  2. I think using a PSHE lesson is an effective way of teaching e-safety to children. Ziegler (2007) suggests that children should be shown the dangers of the web and given an education in how to navigate through types of media. This will give teachers the responsibility to show children the most effective way to use web technology, which again could be done either in an ICT or PSHE lesson.

  3. Although ‘most’ children are perhaps digital natives, as the NFER report states 4 out of 5 children have access to computers and the internet at home. However teachers cannot assume that all children are digital natives, although they have grown up in this digital eera does not automatically assume they have access. Whether its due to culture or social backgrounds, it is vital that all children are given equal opportunities in school, so teachers cannot rely on the use of computers for homework etc because that 1 in 5 children do not have access. The NFER report also suggests the importance of teachers and children being aware of the e-safety issues, children need to understand what steps to take if they feel they are being bullied online.

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