On Monday February 24, 2014 I visited Mrs. Randus’ third and fourth grade split class at Kline Elementary. Her classroom consisted of a mixture of third and fourth grade students who were tested and labeled as gifted in various subject matters. Mrs. Randus was responsible for teaching the children language and reading skills. The class consisted of an equal number of boys and girls, along with a wide variety of cultures. According to my observation, Cushner, McClelland, and Safford (2000) were correct when they stated, "Schools, in particular, are cultural crossroads in a society where distinct but overlapping student, teacher, and school cultures intersect"(93). There were many different religious beliefs, family backgrounds, nationalities, races, social classes, and personalities represented in the class. All of the sources of cultural identity expressed in Human Diversity in Education was represented in Mrs. Randus’ class (Cushner, McClelland, Safford, 2000).
We met with Mrs. Randus before her pupils returned from recess to discuss the technology in her classroom. There were two computers in the classroom for twenty students. One of the computers had a camera on it that faced the class. Every minute a picture was taken of the class at work and immediately placed on the web for parents to view. Mrs. Randus stated, "The parents are able to feel part of the educational process by watching their child’s performance in the classroom"(personal communication, February 24, 2000). Along with the cameras, Mrs. Randus works diligently to build and update her classes web site. Various pieces of information are placed daily on the web site concerning events in her classroom, the student’s progress, upcoming events, and as mentioned earlier a photograph of classroom activity every minute. The web page also contains a daily trivia question that is worth extra credit if answered correctly. Mrs. Randus’ classroom exemplified a third wave school (Cushner et al., 2000). The technology was very impressive and up to date. The students of her class are very lucky to be on the cutting edge of technology.
When the children returned from recess some of them returned to their seats and began to work on projects, while others crowded around the computers to view the new additions to their web site. The children looked excited and eager to learn. It was obvious from the beginning of the observation that Mrs. Randus...