MAS.963 | Fall 2005 | Graduate

Technological Tools for School Reform


There is a significant amount of reading in this course. Your effective participation in and contribution to class discussions depends critically on your familiarity with the readings. I therefore strongly recommend that you start with the readings for the course - especially those for the first four meetings - as soon as possible in order to have a chance to reflect on them before class discussions.

1 Introduction and Overview

Bush, Vannevar. “As We May Think.” (1945.) (Wikipedia entry)

———. “As We May Think.” The Atlantic Monthly 176, no. 1 (July 1945): 101-108.

Gates, William. “Prepared Remarks to the National Educational Summit on High Schools.” February 26, 2005. (PDF)

Friedman, Thomas. The World is Flat. New York, NY: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2005. ISBN: 9780374292881.

Meier, Deborah, and George Wood. Many Children Left Behind. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 2004, Introduction, Preamble, and chapter 5. ISBN: 9780807004593.

No Child Left Behind Act. (The official Web site)


General Context: Approaches to School Reform

Guests: Paula Evans and Rob Riordan

Dewey, John. Experience and Education. New York, NY: Free Press, 1997. ISBN: 9780684838281.

Sizer, Theodore. Horace’s Compromise: The Dilemma of the American High School. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1984, Preface, Introduction, Prologue, Section II, Section IV, and Afterword. ISBN: 9780395344231.

———. The Red Pencil: Convictions from Experience in Education. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2004. ISBN: 9780300104585.

Meier, Deborah, and George Wood. Many Children Left Behind. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 2004, chapters 4 and 6. ISBN: 9780807004593.

No Child Left Behind Act. (The official Web site)

Coalition of Essential Schools. (The official Web site)

High Tech High Charter Schools. (The official Web site)

High Tech High Learning. (The official Web site)


Specific Context (I): Community Charter School of Cambridge (CCSC)

Guests: Rob Riordan and Robin Pringle

Sizer, Theodore. Horace’s Compromise: The Dilemma of the American High School. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 1984, Section I and Section III. ISBN: 9780395344231.

Meier, Deborah. The Power of Their Ideas. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 1996. ISBN: 9780807031117.

Lawrence-Lightfoot, Sara. Respect. Reading, MA: Perseus Books, 1999, Introduction and chapter 3. ISBN: 9780738200934.

Commonwealth Charter Application. Cambridge, MA: Community Charter School of Cambridge, November 14, 2003. (PDF - 3.4 MB)


Specific Context (II): CCSC Design Principles

Guests: CCSC Faculty, Rob Riordan, and Robin Pringle

Dewey, John. “My Pedagogic Creed.” School Journal 54 (January 1897): 77-80.

Meier, Deborah. In Schools We Trust. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 2003. ISBN: 9780807031513.

Tatum, Beverly Daniel. Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria? New York, NY: Harper Collins Publishers, 1997, Introduction, chapters 1, 2, 4, 10, and Epilogue. ISBN: 9780465091270.

Lawrence-Lightfoot, Sara. The Essential Conversation. New York, NY: Random House, 2003, Introduction, chapter 3, and Conclusion. ISBN: 9780375505270.

Duckworth, Eleanor Ruth. “The Having of Wonderful Ideas” and Other Essays on Teaching and Learning. New York, NY: Teachers College Press, Teachers College, Columbia University, 1996. ISBN: 9780807735138.


The Role of Technology (I): Documentation for Reflection, Evaluation, and Communication

Guest: Glorianna Davenport

Project Zero and Reggio Children. Making Learning Visible: Children as Individual and Group Learners. Cambridge, MA: Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School of Education, 2001. ISBN: 9788887960259.

Goldman-Segall, Rikki. Points of Viewing Children’s Thinking: A Digital Ethnographers Journey. Mahwah, NJ: L. Erlbaum, 1997. ISBN: 9780805824322.

Davenport, Glorianna. “Sharing Video Memory: Goals, Strategies and Technology.” Cambridge, MA: MIT Media Lab. (Short Working Paper)

Marshall, John. “Filming and Learning.” In The Cinema of John Marshall. Visual Anthropology 3. Edited by Jay Ruby. Philadelphia, PA: Harwood Academic Publishers, 1993.

Review “A Kalahari Family” from Documentary Educational Resources to get a sense of John Marshall’s ethnographic life work.

Leacock, Richard. “The Art of Home Movies.” (PDF) November 30, 1993. (Draft article)

———. “A search for a Feeling of Being There.” (PDF) May 20, 1997.

Additional Recommended Reading

Barnouw, Erik. Documentary: A History of the Non-Fiction Film. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1983. ISBN: 9780195033014.

Geertz, Clifford. The Interpretation of Cultures. New York, NY: Basic Books, 2000. ISBN: 9780465097197.

Manovitch, Lev. The Language of New Media. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2001. ISBN: 9780262133746.

Goldman-Segall, R. “Learning Constellations: A Multimedia Ethnographic Research Environment Using Video Technology to Explore Children’s Thinking.” PhD dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1990.

Butler, Deirdre. “Self determined Teacher Learning in a Digital Context: Fundamental Change in Thinking and Practice.” PhD dissertation, Joint Faculty of Education, St Patrick’s College and Dublin City University, 2004.


The Role of Technology (II): Creating Deep Community Connections

Guests: Erik Blankinship, Mike Ananny, Leo Burd, and Stefan Agamanolis

First Half: The Many Faces of Community Connections

Smith, B., and E. Blankinship. “Justifying imagery: Multimedia support for learning through explanation.” IBM Systems Journal 39, no. 3-4 (2000): 749-767.

Sirianni, C., and L. Friedland. “Civic Innovation and American Politics.” In Civic Innovation in America. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2001. ISBN: 9780520226371.

Price, V. “Problems of Public Opinion.” In Public Opinion. Newbury Park, CA: SAGE Publications, 1992. ISBN: 9780803940239.

Ananny, M., and C. Strohecker. “Forms and Forums for Developing Public Opinions.” International Journal of Knowledge and Learning. (Forthcoming)

Burd, L. “Technology-Supported, Youth-Led Social Change in Low-Income Communities.” Paper presented at annual meeting of Digital Nations, Sao Paolo, Brazil, 2004.

Second Half: Tools for Creating Distributed Reflective Learning Communities

Blankinship, E. “E-mail list Equations to Create Specific Audiences.” MIT Media Lab Paper, 2002. (PDF - 1.0 MB)

DIVER project Web site: Digital Interactive Video Exploration and Reflection. (Web site by the SCiL at Stanford)

Agamanolis, S. “Designing Displays for Human Connectedness.” In Public and Situated Displays: Social and Interactional Aspects of Shared Display Technologies. Edited by Kenton O’Hara, Mark Perry, Elizabeth Churchill, and Daniel Russell. New York, NY: Springer-Verlag, 2003. ISBN: 9781402016776.

Bly, S. A., S. R. Harrison, and S. Irwin. “Media spaces: Bringing People Together in a Video, Audio, and Computing Environment.” Communications of the ACM 36, no. 1 (1993): 28-46.

You may also wish to review other Publications by the Human Connectedness Research Group at Media Lab Europe.

7 Final Project Proposal: Brainstorming Session  
8 The Role of Technology (III): Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology

First Half: Children as Scientists and Engineers

Resnick, M., et al. “Beyond Black Boxes: Bringing Transparency and Aesthetics Back to Scientific Investigation.” Journal of the Learning Sciences 9, no. 1 (2000): 7-30. (PDF)

Martin, F. “Kids Learning Engineering Science Using LEGO and the Programmable Brick.” Paper Presented at Annual Meeting of AERA, New York, NY, April 8-12, 1996. (PDF - 1.5 MB)

Turbak, F., and R. Berg. “Robotic Design Studio: Exploring the Big Ideas of Engineering in a Liberal Arts Environment.” Journal of Science Education and Technology 11, no. 3 (September 2002): 237-253. (PDF)

Martin, F., et al. “To Mindstorms and Beyond: Evolution of a Construction Kit for Magical Machines.” Chapter 1 in Robots for Kids. Edited by J. Hendler and A. Druin. San Francisco, CA: Morgan Kaufman, 2000. ISBN: 9781558605978. (PDF)

Mikhak, B., et al. “The Children’s Machines: Handheld and Wearable Computers Too.” In Proceedings of the 1st International Symposium on Handheld and Ubiquitous Computing. Karlsruhe, Germany: Springer-Verlag, 1999. ISBN: 9783540665502.

Hancock, C. “Real-Time Programming and the Big Ideas of Computational Literacy.” PhD dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2003. (PDF - 3.5 MB)

Second Half: Personal Fabrication

Gershenfeld, N. FAB: The Coming Revolution on Your Desktop - From Personal Computers to Personal Fabrication. New York, NY: Basic Books, 2005. ISBN: 9780465027453.

Lyon, C. “Encouraging Innovation by Engineering the Learning Curve.” Mechanical Engineering Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2003. (PDF - 7.3 MB)

Eisenberg, M. “Mindstuff: Educational Technology Beyond the Computer.” Convergence 9, no. 2 (Summer 2003): 29-53. (PDF)

Mikhak, B., et al. “FAB LAB: An Alternate Model of ICT for Development.” Paper presented at Development by Design Conference, Bangalore, India, 2002. (PDF)


The Role of Technology (IV): Media Literacy

Guest: Erik Blankinship

Atwell, Nancie. In the Middle. Portsmouth, NH: Boynton/Cook, 1998. ISBN: 9780867093742.

Delpit, Lisa. Other People’s Children. New York, NY: New Press, 1996. ISBN: 9781565841802.

Blankinship, E., et al. “Closed Captions, Open Source.” BT Technology Journal 22, no. 4 (October 2004): 151-159. (PDF)

Basu, Anindita. “Full Contact Poetry.” MS Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2002.

Shankar, Tara. “Speaking on the Record.” PhD dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2005.

Kegan, Robert, and L. L. Lahey. How the Way We Talk Can Change the Way We Work. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, 2000. ISBN: 9780787955359.


The Role of Technology (V): Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology

Guest: Eric Klopfer

First Half: Computational Science and Mathematics: Logo, StarLogo, New Kind of Science

Papert, S. Mindstorms: Children, Computers and Powerful Ideas. New York, NY: Basic Books, 1982. ISBN: 9780465046294.

———. “An Exploration in the Space of Mathematics Educations.” International Journal of Computers for Mathematical Learning 1, no. 1 (1996): 95-123.

Resnick, M. “Beyond the Centralized Mindset.” Journal of the Learning Sciences 5, no. 1 (1996): 1-22.

Wolfram, S. The New Kind of Science. Champaign, IL: Wolfram Media, 2002. ISBN: 9781579550080.

Second Half: Handheld and Wearable Computers

Klopfer, E., et al. “Comparative analysis of Palm and wearable computers for Participatory Simulations.” Journal of Computer Assisted Learning 20, no. 5 (October 2004): 347-359.

———. “Using Palm Technology in Participatory Simulations of Complex Systems: A New Take on Ubiquitous and Accessible Mobile Computing.” Journal of Science Education and Technology 14, no. 3 (September 2005): 285-297.

Colella, V. “Participatory Simulations: Building Collaborative Understanding through Immersive Dynamic Modeling.” MS Thesis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1998.

MIT Teacher Education Program (Web site - Selected Readings)

Hi-CE and GoKnow (Web sites - Selected Readings)


The Role of Technology (VI): Learning All the Time

Guests: Sandy Pentland and Eric Klopfer

Klopfer, E., and K. Squire. “Environmental Detectives - The Development of an Augmented Reality Platform for Environmental Simulations.” 2004.

———. “Augmented Reality Simulations on Handheld Computers.” Paper presented at the annual American Educational Research Association Conference, Chicago, IL, 2003.

de Freitas, S., and M. Levene. “Evaluating the development of wearable devices, personal data assistants and the use of other mobile devices in further and higher education institutions.” JISC Technology and Standards Watch Report: Wearable Technology. TSW03-05 (June 2005): 1-21. (PDF)

Gips, Jonathan, and Alex (Sandy) Pentland. “Mapping Human Networks.” PerCom. Fourth IEEE International Conference on Pervasive Computing and Communications, 2006, pp. 159-168.

12 The Role of Technology (VII): Art, Music, and Technology

First Half: Art, Design and Technology

Selections from books by John Maeda on the work of his research groups: Aesthetics of Computation and Physical Language Workshop.

Selections from the work of Chris Csikszentmihalyi and his research group: Civic Media.

Selections from relevant theses from Grassroots Invention and Lifelong Kindergarten groups at the lab.

Second Half: Digital Audio and Computer Music

Selections from relevant theses and papers from Hyperinstruments (Opera of the Future), Music, Mind and Machine, Responsive Environments, Tangible Media, Grassroots Invention and Lifelong Kindergarten research groups at the MIT Media Lab.

13 Understanding the Role of Nonprofit and Volunteer Organizations in School Reform

Drucker, Peter F. Managing the Non-Profit Organization. New York, NY: Harper Collins, 1990. ISBN: 9780060165079.

Frumkin, Peter. On Being Nonprofit. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2002. ISBN: 9780674007680.

Letts, Christine W., William P. Ryan, and Allen Grossman. High Performance Nonprofit Organizations. New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons, 1998. ISBN: 9780471174578.

14 Final Presentations  

Course Info

As Taught In
Fall 2005
Learning Resource Types
Projects with Examples