An Update

Field Report Image
Field Report Image

Since the L@TCH program is now in full swing, it's been a while since my last update here. I've been directing my blogging energies (which I don't have much of due to other tasks) to the L@TCH blog:
Here you can go back in time and read all the ups and downs I've experienced with the L@TCH program so far.

All the pieces seem to be in place to distribute home computers to Baltimore City public school families, except the families... We've only distributed about 20% of our targeted goal (500 computers) and we are almost at the deadline we had previously set to have all computers distributed. The problem seems to be that parents are not receiving information about the program from the schools. We've come up with a couple of strategies to help our school partners reach more families:
1. Phone calls home to parents: We hope that by directly contacting parents we can provide them with the information they need to sign up.
2. In class demonstrations for the students: Our initial idea was to give the students flyers to take home to their parents. The paradox here being, one of the reasons the L@TCH program was created was because we know students often forget to take notes home to parents. Now we are going to get our volunteers to go into the schools and demonstrate some of the educational games that come loaded on the L@TCH computers. Hopefully students will be so pumped about the prospect of getting a home computer with sweet games they will give their parents the flyer and tell them to sign up.

Being the coordinator of this project requires that I keep a lot of people and tasks straight and here is where my weakness lies. Currently, I am working on breaking down all the information in my notes and reviewing everything from the beginning in order to compile it into one document. I'm hoping as I do this it will keep me more organized as I continue the year.

Although we have not had as many workshops as we had hoped at this time, the planning and execution of the workshops we have had is going very well. My favorite part of the job is to see the students and the parents engaged and having a great time at our workshops!

Comment from Bill Brown on February 9, 2011 - 11:39am

love your blog Devon. That story about the teacher refusing to give out her e-mail and didn't want anything to do with home computers is really surprising and unfortunate. Also - can i post the two flyers that you attached on your blog to our resources page? Did you make the flyers or write the copy or anything?

Comment from Devon Smolca on February 9, 2011 - 12:31pm

Thank you for your support! You can most certainly post the flyers. The poster was created by my supervisor and the flyer was a collaboration between my supervisor and I.