Oh no! New Computers!
Please recall that in November the computers were removed from the class because students ripped them apart. Now, the computers are back, and the class has taken leave of their senses. Students pulling keyboards out of other students hands, rap videos blaring from Yahoo music with scantily clad dancers shaking their be-thonged behinds. A seven students brawl with spine-cracking body throws towards the computer table. Class work was ignored out of hand, and a crowd three person deep ringed the Magic Boxes. Madness and chaos. And that was even before they learned Myspace was blocked out.
I warned them. “Away from the computer guys, we have work to do.”
“Log out the computer now.”
I didn’t even exist.
“Off, now. Don’t make me turn bitch.”
I got a chuckle or two, but all eyes were on the student who had googled an image search on weed.
I yanked the two plugs and faced a sea of angry eyes.
“No one uses the computers until we have a conversation.” I said to the livid and disbelieving teenagers. I went to the chalkboard, wrote “Computer Rules,” and we talked, as a class about rules that would be fair to both teacher and students when it came time to use the computer. I’m proud that the students themselves came up with more than half the rules, like 15 minute limit, and if two people fight over a computer they both lose a turn. I transferred the ruled from board to chart paper and invested in a log in book for students to put names and times they started.
Above all I stressed that students who finish work have first priority over the computers. With five weeks left in the school year, I’m still finding ways to manipulate the students into completing work.