An eighth grader's perspectives on the use of ICT in schools
During the month of February, we had the opportunity to welcome an eighth grader in our offices for a one-week internship. Mehdi was on placement to discover the world of the enterprise. He got a chance to interact with the designers and developers of iTooch Apps and also shared with the communication and marketing team his perspective in the use of Information Communication and Technology in his school.
We invite you to discover Mehdi’s interview below.
How is middle School? Do you use IT in class?
Unfortunately some of my teachers have limited ICT skills resulting to only a few hours of IT lessons per month . However a few teachers are tech-savy, and therefore most classes use interactive whiteboards, which are simpler to use. Concerning IT lessons, my school outsources IT specialists who work with us in the computer labs for four hours every month. We usually work in small groups, this is fun at times, because we get to exchange our ideas and help each other out when we have difficulties.
What do you learn during your IT classes?
We learn a lot of things, if only we had more hours for IT lessons, then we could learn a lot more! But considering the large number of students and the small number of computers, I still consider ourselves lucky compared to some schools in France or around the world. We are currently writing blog posts about « Le Grand Paris ». Through this exercise, we have learned how to do research on the Internet, how to insert pictures and videos in a document and we have also improved our writing skills.
Given a choice, would you choose desktops, tablets or laptops for your school?
If I had to make a choice for my school, I would definitely choose a tablet simply because tablets are more intuitive, faster and less expensive than desktops and laptops. Maybe if my school considered getting tablets instead of expensive desktops, it would be better equipped than it is now.
What changes would you like to see in your school?
The weight of our school bags and the size of our classes are two aspects that I would like to see improved. Our school bags are very heavy (more than 20lbs) because we have to carry our books to and from school everyday. Just imagine if each student had a tablet where he could do and save his homework on? Our bags would be so much lighter!
Another aspect is overcrowded classes: we are 33 students in my eighth grade class! An average class in my school has got 30 students. I think that this is a large number of students for one teacher to handle. If classes were not overcrowded, it would be easier for us to interact with our teachers and also with our fellow students. It is a bit challenging for teachers to interact with each student because there is no enough time for everyone.
I think that tablets can impact the way we learn and also reduce the weight of our school bags but I also believe that we need more teachers in our schools.
It is clear that you like tablets Mehdi, do you have a tablet or a smartphone?
Yes I have a smartphone that I use to communicate with my family and close friends. I have downloaded a few apps such as the GPS and the Weather app. My family owns a Windows 8 tablet and an iPad, which I use to surf on the Internet and to play with educational apps.
Educational apps? Tell us more about them.
I often play with iTooch apps, that I discovered thanks to my father. iTooch Math is my favourite because I have made tremendous progress in Math by playing and practicing with iTooch apps which are simple, fun and intuitive. iTooch apps are my favorite because they are always easy to revise with. I think educational apps are an alternative way to learn, especially for teenagers like me who find it boring to revise using books.
Mehdi spent a very enriching week with the eduPad team. Just like majority of teenagers, when Mehdi is not doing his homework or sports, he likes playing his favourite video game, ”League of Legends”