Monday, March 19, 2012

Purchasing power!

I meant to do this one before the MAME one, oops.

I missed 2/3rds of class on Friday (there was a district media specialists meeting). So I only got to see the part about purchasing technology. I've always been suspicious of smartboards, ever since my Junior year of high school (11 years ago, weird) and my Biotechnology class got one. We never really used it for anything other than getting online, and it was really nothing more than a projected image on a whiteboard.  When I was doing my student teaching, I was at a school where every room had a projector, a wired sound system, and a laptop computer for teachers to use. The difference between the two was that I could do so much more, and faster, on the second option. Also, I'm a fan of flexibility. A smartboard is stuck in one room, with one user, the others can be moved and changed to your heart's content and your classrooms' needs.

This takes me to thoughts on pricing and quality. I've always been told that you pay for what you get, so I'm ultimately suspicious when we go for the lowest priced computer or component, because we want to get more. Sure, we may get 30 computers, but who's to say they'll continue to work in the long run? Or will be compatible? Or will have the service to back them up? Ultimately, I think spending slightly more, for a brand-name or well-tested computer is a better long-term investment, especially for a school library where they're going to have the crap beaten out of them.

All in all, my thoughts on purchasing are "man this is hard". But, it's also necessary, so we need to constantly be keeping up with prices and technology change, for that day in April when the principal has $5,000 in their slush fund that needs to be spent.

4 comments:

  1. "Man this is hard." After we found some cheaper options, I would have to say that I would probably have gone with quality over pricing.

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  2. Whiteboards, whiteboards, whiteboards. What is their true value? Someone in my SI 500 discussion said, as a substitute teacher, he once wrote on an interactive whiteboard with a Sharpie- OOPS! He was able to clean it off though:) I'd like to sit in on a class with a teacher who demonstrates real expertise on an interactive whiteboard AND converts that to an enhanced learning experience for their students. Then I might feel some more "love" for them.

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  3. I'm the same--I didn't finish the assignment because I started comparing the quality of everything, looking up reviews, thinking of who I could ask about it...one reason I liked the SmartBoard, despite the higher price--only one or two components instead of multiple.

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  4. Yeah, I'm also not a fan of smartboards. Seriously, what do they do that is so amazing that it justifies the cost?

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