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has google replaced the old fashioned text book?

(12 Posts)
Hatwoman Thu 13-Oct-11 23:28:05

dd's homework seems, very often, to comprise looking something up on the internet. I realise that internet research is a skill they need but aibu (or old-fahioned?) to think it's not a skill they need to use all the time, at the expense of looking at sources (whether books or web-based) that have been specifically identified by the school/teacher as a good source of the information they want the kids to absorb?

gingeroots Fri 14-Oct-11 08:21:43

Same thoughts here .
I think it's inevitable that google has replaced texts .
And that they need to be taught ( if that can be done ) how to use internet thoughtfully ,wean out less reliable info ,how to asses what's on line .
Oh ,and put typing on the curriculum .

GypsyMoth Fri 14-Oct-11 08:22:34

Which 'textbook'?

Erebus Fri 14-Oct-11 08:48:26

I while ago I queried the more or less complete lack of textbooks coming home from DS's outstanding comp and was told, on here, that I was being 'old fashioned'!! He has a science book and a maths book, plus a Spanish 'workbook'. End of. The rest of it comes home on bits of photocopied paper, and his exercise books are a mass of these all stuck in.

Much of his homework is done using Google, and I'm not sure he'd know how to find his way around an actual text book! I blame the NC where they 'dip in' and 'dip out' of everything. I mean, his English apparently focuses on writing styles, so we get one photocopied poem; a couple of paragraphs from say Shakespeare; a chapter from a spy novel- but never the whole book.

Hatwoman Fri 14-Oct-11 09:30:11

the problem I have (or may have - tis early days of y7) is not use of the internet per se, rather it is that the school/teachers seem not to provide source material that they consider good quality, from which the children can extract key points of information.

the example - that got me thinking - was last night's history homework: this was to answer a question: what did Britain gain from the slave trade?

would it not be better to provide a text/good website for them to read, and then ask them to write an answer to that question?

BertieBotts Fri 14-Oct-11 09:49:22

I'm at university and it's been stated on one of my modules this term that they are trying to "wean us off" textbooks - all the essential readings (normally one chapter) have been scanned onto the library website so we can download them (a godsend when you are part time - like me - and don't get onto campus much aside from lecture times) - also means the library doesn't have to keep as many copies in of all the essential readings, which is helpful as seminar groups are getting bigger.

I agree though that they ought to be giving them actual proper websites to look through, and/or actually having lessons in internet research. It's easy to search and just print off any old bollocks which looks relevant, but what are they learning from that? The internet can be a fantastic tool for learning if used to its full capacity - this is not it, and it's not giving them any kind of insight into how to develop these skills.

ClevelandAnnie Fri 14-Oct-11 10:15:01

I thought it was those photocopied worksheets that have replaced the textbook hmm

Though as I remember it, the textbooks I had at school weren't all that wonderful either. Boring at best.

IndigoBell Fri 14-Oct-11 11:07:43

Text books aren't differentiated, normally aren't very good, are heavy, and are expensive.

Why would school stick with them?

BertieBotts Fri 14-Oct-11 11:16:05

We didn't have lockers at my school. On days that we had 2 textbooks to carry around all day it was bad enough. Having one for every subject would have been awful.

Hatwoman Fri 14-Oct-11 12:06:06

Indigobell - I'm not sure I understand what you mean by saying they're not differentiated. There are good ones and bad ones.

I think maybe my thread title is a bit misleading - it's not that I am either against web-based resources or that I am pro-text book resources (or that I have a particular stand on photo-copied worksheets) it's the (apparent) absence (in dd's case - so far) of providing either - which leaves kids googling and then wading around in a sea of (mostly not very good) information. yes she needs to learn how to find and identify good information on the net - but when you only have say 30 minutes of homework I don't think it's a good use of time to be doing this too much.

bertiebotts - university is very different. and also varies hugely depending on the subject. some lend themselves to key text books; some you need to read academic books that argue, analyse and disagree etc

IndigoBell Fri 14-Oct-11 12:10:59

Differentiated means that all kids get work at their level - whether they're higher or lower ability.

So that normally means they need to be given different work. Rather hard to do if they're all doing p45 of a textbook.

Erebus Fri 14-Oct-11 12:27:43

Not if the top set are reading page 45 of textbook A and the middle set in the classroom next door are reading page 28 of Textbook B, really!

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