Columns & Editorials
View from the Classroom



View from the Classroom began as a weekly column about technology and education for the Low End Mac site. After its first year, View appeared exclusively on the MATH DITTOS 2 site as a sometimes technology, more often political, education column. I took early retirement at the end of the 2003-2004 school year and couldn't in good conscience use the View header anymore, other than one final column in 2008 that really went with the fifth year of View columns.

For other column series (That Other Steve..., Busman's Holiday), please see my full Columns & Editorials page and the Educators' News Features page.

View from the Classroom -- The Fifth Year

Worms, Fall Break, Panther, and Desktop Photos
This one's just a bit of a ramble about this and that.
Where Apple Education Got It Right...and Wrong
Despite a 15% drop in K-12 education sales, Apple Education is doing some things right!
Not Really an End of the Year Column
This one's just a pleasant after Christmas rambling.
A Gaggle of...
Part 3 and the final chapter of our computer take-home project for our special education students.
  Why I Got Out
I didn't publish this one until the end of 2008, but it sorta wraps up the View series...and my teaching career. (12/17/2008)

View from the Classroom -- The Fourth Year

Straight Talk About the Education Market
This certainly isn't the column I wanted to begin the new school year with. Apple is desperate...and for good reason.
More Straight Talk About the Education Market
I hate "the readers speak" columns, but I just had to do this one.
Co:Writer 4000
This is one piece of assistive technology that every elementary classroom should have.
Computers in the Classroom:
Fourth Year Classroom Tour
What a change a "few bucks" spent well on technology can bring!

View from the Classroom -- The Third Year

Why I Prefer Macs in the Classroom
I've desperately tried to avoid the political intrigues of school building platform wars. Now I'm smack dab in the middle of them again.
Getting Ready for...
It's been a difficult beginning of a new school year. My kids came back ready to learn. I was ready, too, but my school corporation wasn't.
Thermos Bottle Barometer
Our national leaders seem on track to pass education reform legislation that won't.
Mia's Reading Adventure
Kutoka Interactive has a hot reading title for the younger set.
Third Year Classroom Tour: My Classroom "Cast of Characters"
This should have been the first column of the school year. Instead, it's one of the last.
iBooks for Backwash Elementary
We got a cart of iBooks. Oh boy,oh boy, oh boy!
Out of this World Desktop Pictures (from NASA and Others)
Great photos for classroom use as desktop pictures.
Educators' News feature
Special Report for Educators -- Macintosh Pricing
A no text, no opionion comparison of retail and education Mac prices.
Educators' News feature
Jaguar Pricing: Where Does It Leave Schools?
Apple's pricing of the Mac OS X 10.2 upgrade leaves a lot of school IT people in a pickle.

View from the Classroom -- The Second Year

Making Schools Better?
Verbally kicking public schools and educators in the shins is becoming a national pasttime. Steve answers with some of his own unique views on the subject.
A Gaggle of LC IIIs: Part 1
Ever wish you could just give each of your students a computer? A great deal got me started on doing just that!
A Gaggle of LC IIIs: Part 2
Our computer give-away continues with signs of academic success.
A Final Blast for 2000
I make a few intemperate comments on Apple's surrender of the education market as I watch my school go WinTel.
Educational Sales & Profits Down? Why Not Just Raise Prices?
Someone from Apple Computer really, really needs to explain the contradiction of Apple's variously stated "commitment to education" and the $100 price increase of the new entry-level iMac.
A "Now" Open Letter to Cheryl Vedoe
I wrote Apple's new education sales VP a letter. Since there was no response, I thought I'd share it with you.
Apple Education: "I'm Not Dead," (Yet)
Is Apple Education actually going to make a fight for school sales?
Never mind. Apple Education probably is dead.
From the pricing of the new iBooks, it appears Apple Ed really isn't on Steve Jobs list of things to save.
Two Weeks with an iBook
Despite my previous comments on iBook pricing, I got my hands on a demo iBook for a couple of weeks. It's a nice laptop...just priced about $200 too high.
Teacher Tools 5: Teachers Still Love "Free!"
Links to lots of educational freewares and sites
A Surplus Auction
I went to a school surplus auction looking for a IIci and came home with four Performa 550's!
Great Classroom Computer Buys on a Coke and Lunch Money Budget -- 68K Macs
The 68K Mac lineup is a fantastic smorgasbord for budget minded vintage Mac shoppers.
Great Classroom Computer Buys: When the Worst Can Turn Out to be the Best
There are several Power Macs for the budget minded Mac shopper.

View from the Classroom -- The First Year

A Menagerie of Macs
While I didn't reach my goal of 5 multimedia computers for my classrom last year, this year we've got it knocked.
Troubleshooting 101
Grandma T always said, "If it doesn't work, give it a good rap." It always worked with us kids and sometimes it works with computers!
This Week's "Non-Column"
Even when you have good ideas for a column, things just go all wrong.
Lab Fun
I always thought setting up a lab would be fun. It is, but it's serious work.
Is Steve Fiddling While Apple's Ed Marketshare Burns?
The title sorta says it all, doesn't it?
Home Page Lives!
Follow me through a conflict test that "saves" Home Page for me on OS 9.
Mac OS 9: I Think I Like It!
With just a few qualifications, OS 9 is a real winner when it comes to system stability.
Teacher Tools 1: AppleWorks
Without a doubt, AppleWorks is the biggest gun in my bag of "teacher apps."
Teacher Tools 2: Gradebooks
Ho-hum! But then, how I do a series on teacher tools without doing gradebooks?
Teacher Tools 3: Teachers Love "Free"
Freeware education apps recommended by the readers.
Blue Monday
A failed power supply starts a crummy week that ends well with news of...well, you need to read it.
Teacher Tools 4: A Roll-Your-Own Spelling Program
A "sure thing" self image builder for our kids turned into a pretty passable spelling program.
A Mini-Tour of my Mac
What do I use when writing my columns?
The Required New Years Column: Avoiding Complacency
A Mac lover looks at the year past--and all is not rosy.
Adoption Notice for an SE/30
An SE/30 finds a new lease on life in a fifth grade classroom.
Older Macs
A friend called about her "new" Mac IIci.
Performa 575 to PowerMac 575
Illustrated upgrade instructions for the Performa/LC 5xx series.
Making Your PC Work With Your Mac
Here's a little recipe for PC and Mac compatibility for we AppleWorks users.
Has Apple Ceded the Education Market?
It's been 18 months since the cancellation of the last Mac made specifically for the education market. Has Apple given up on the ed market?
Hard Drives...Bigger and Cheaper
There's never been a better time to spring for a giant hard drive upgrade.
A Mac IIcx for a Friend
I got ahold of a couple of "freebie" Macs and set one up for my teaching assistant.
Adobe Isn't Making Many Friends
Adobe's recent attempted ripoff of InDesign users reminds us that they still haven't met their committments for Acrobat 4.
Going Wintel...for a Month
Each year at this time I end up using Windows for a month for about 90% of my computing.
Going Wintel...for a Month: Week 2
This week I wrestle a 500 pound grizzly bear. Actually, I do a crummy install of a new print driver.
Troubleshooting my Mac IIfx
I was really tempted to just shoot it and put it out of its misery. But I finally lucked into a simple cure.
Going Wintel...for a Month: Conclusion
I survived and it wasn't really all that bad.
Improving the User Experience?
Maybe it's time for Apple to let the Users Groups and Mac magazines distribute software updates again.
I'm Still Glad I Bought Beige
With all the new features and lower prices, I'm still glad I jumped into G3 computing when I did.
In Search of a Web Host
My web host jumped ship, but I found a new one without too much wear and tear.
Gone Fishing for the Summer
I'm taking a bit of time off. After a few months, maybe my objectivity will return.

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last updated 10/21/2010
2010 Steven L. Wood