Random Thoughts

1 Computer, 1 Document Camera

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I was reading and commenting on COETAIL blogs when I came across this blog post from Julie. Julie and Gwen (a teacher and a librarian) work at the American Coopertive School of Tunis, where on September 14th a protest across the street from the school at the American Embassy turned violent.

The school was burned and looted during the protest. Gwen put together this video of some of the destruction that happened at the school and specifically the library.

Julie’s blog post talks about the frustration of going from a technology rich enviornment to having one computer and a document camera. Which got me thinking….if I was in this situation where I had 1 computer and a document camera what would I do?


Would be our new best friend, not sure if the school has the bandwidth for it, but I’d try Skype or a Google Hangout (which has worked better for me overseas) and try to connect with others in the outside world. I’d be Skyping in other classes, authors, friends, heck my own parents to talk to the kids, teach them something, tell a story and as Julie puts it “get off the stage.”


We would set up a class twitter account and make connections with others. We’d follow other classes, people of interest, even comedians. We’d find ways to connect with the outside world and bring that learning back into our classroom some how, some way.

Stop Motion Video:

Using the document camera we’d create stop motion videos taking images from the camera and importing them into a video editing program. The whole class would be involved in the production from layout, background design, to making of characters. You can make homemade Play Dough with basic ingredients so even that becomes a math lesson. Our goal would be for my kids to be the best stop motion crew in the country by the time we got computers back in the school.

Tell Our Story:

Photo by Gwen Martin

Because this is me, it would be a blog. But I don’t really care what the platform is, we’d be telling our story to the world. We’d find a way to be taking pictures and telling our story about how we’re rebuilding our classroom and our school. There is an audience out there for this I’m sure.

Some times we got caught up in how much technology we have or don’t have or wish we had rather than finding ways to use what we have the best way we can.

What would you do in this situation? 1 computer, 1 document camera…..go!

I started blogging in 2005 and found it such a powerful way to reflect and share my thinking about technology, this generation, and how we prepare students for their future not our past.

1 Comment

  1. I used to say that a very good teacher could teach with a stick in the dirt on the ground. It is only a matter of thinking…really thinking as you teach children. It made me wonder at how dependent teachers have become on technology. While it does enrich the classroom it does not make a better teacher. In fact one computer and 1 document camera is a treasure beyond words in the hands of the right person (like you perhaps).

    I love this thought provoking post Jeff.


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