Maineis push to put an iBook in the hands of every middle school student and teacher has met with some resistance, particularly from those who question the cost and whether there are real benefits to be had by giving school kids computers. Governor Angus King has defended the program, which is being scrutinized by other states, saying that the success of the program is "unbelievable."
Now, Gov. King , the Initiative, and Maine 7th graders potentially have a new ally. Stephen King, a native of Maine and a long-time Mac user, has offered his services as a mentor to aspiring writers. According a an Associated Press article appearing in the Portsmouth Herald titled "Stephen King offers services as seventh-grade writing coach," the author would like to use the iBooks being distributed to 7th graders as a means of communicating with them about writing. From the article:
King told a group of Freeport Middle School seventh-graders Tuesday that he would like to set up an interactive, Internet-based system through which he could teach writing to students.
The idea is conceptual for now, King said, but it illustrates the learning possibilities that the laptop computers bring to Maine classrooms.
"I would like to teach writing via this technology," King told the students. "I would like to get in touch with you and have you get in touch with me. Because that can happen, and together we can make that happen."
King was at the school with Gov. Angus King to visit classrooms and talk to students and teachers to see how they are using the 115 Apple iBook laptops that are in use at the school. The laptop initiative calls for putting a computer into the hands of every middle school student in Maine.
The article goes on to report that Stephen King believes in the program to equip middle schoolers with computers:
"You are going to be in the history books," King said.
Stephen King, who grew up in nearby Durham and now lives in Bangor, said all students in time will have computers as part of their learning arsenal.
"Thereis never been a class that has had what you have before you," he said. "When I was in the seventh grade, I was given a pen."
Read the full article in the Portsmouth Herald