Saturday, October 24, 2009

... and the beat goes on!

Wow, I just found out where they plan to move my pcLab/classRoom.  We are moving from room 429 to room 622 in order to be closer to the science department so as to improve collaboration!  BTW, we already collaborate plenty.
This move is a huge mistake, however.  I've been in room 429 since 1984 and I've been perfecting it all that time.  Room 429 is great the way it is.  If The-Powers-That-Be decide to move my existing hardware, software, firmware, linux LAN, linux cluster, windows LAN, ftp server, ssh server and apache server you know there's going to be a ton of debugging to do after the move.  Nothing will work right for months adversely affecting the amount of instruction time available.
On the other hand, if we build a new lab from scratch, we are still looking at a lot of manhours before, during and after the move.  I didn't even mention the expense of all new hardware...
A bigger problem still, is the fact that room 429 is about 22 ft x 32 ft.  The new room, 622, is only 22ft by 25ft or so.  How will we fit all 24 student stations in the new room?  If we move to the smaller room, we would have to sacrifice upwards of 6 student stations!

BTW, please realize that room 429 is not just a resource lab used once in a while for its PCs.  Room 429 is used everyday as a classroom too.  As such, every one of the 24 students has a "PC desktop" and an old-fashioned "Wooden desktop."  The wooden desktop is necessary for taking notes, writing drafts, taking tests, etc.  The PC desktop is necessary when the students are programming. 

My AP Computer Science students have always used both desktops every period, every day.  My AP Calculus students traditionally only used the wooden desktops, but they are starting to use the PC desktop more and more as we discover more scientific computing and computer algebra system applications!  Origianlly, I moved my AP Calculus students into this pcLab/classRoom some years ago as it was the only room where I could use the Smart Airliner Slate (Wacom PC Tablet that works with Smart Notebook like a Smartboard) to present and record all my lessons.

Current Room 429:
SS_SS_SS_SS_         _SS_SS_SS_SS
SS_SS_SS_SS_    x    _SS_SS_SS_SS
SS_SS_SS_SS_         _SS_SS_SS_SS
Propsed Room 622:
SS_SS_SS_         _SS_SS_SS
SS_SS_SS_    x   _SS_SS_SS
SS_SS_SS_         _SS_SS_SS
             TS1     TS2
SS = Student Station/PC desktop
_ = wooden desktop
x = ceiling mounted projector
TS = Teacher Station/PC desktop

BTW, the new room has 2 teacher stations proposed.  One will run Linux all day and the other will run Windows all day.  This way, we don't have to reboot the teacher station every period when teachers need to switch from Linux to Windows and back again!

Learning with Technology,

No comments:

Post a Comment