WILD for learning: Interacting through new computing devices anytime, anywhere

Abstract : We use the acronym WILD to refer to Wireless Interactive Learning Devices1. WILD are powerful and small handheld2 networked computing devices. The smallest handheld computers fit in one hand easily. The user interacts with the device either by touching the screen with a pen-shaped stylus, or by typing with both thumbs on a small keyboard known as a thumb-pad keyboard. The largest are the size of a paperback book and have a keyboard that is large enough to type on with all ten fingers. Their low price point and high usability has captured the imaginations of educators and learning scientists. The promise of harnessing computing where every student has his or her own computer, and where they are available everyday, anytime, anywhere for equitable, personal, effective, and engaging learning give WILD a greater transformative potential than desktop computers. This chapter provides an account of the learning, education, social, policy, and technical contexts for these developments. We begin by establishing these contexts, and then survey available research and commercial applications for how the properties of WILD computing may facilitate learning. We focus on efforts where the "technology in the WILD" is being used to bring learners into activities previously unreachable--whether due to administrative, time, financial, demographic, previous knowledge, accessibility, or academic constraints. We emphasize the unique features that WILD add to classroom dynamics and to learning in the world, both in formal and informal contexts. In closing, we review the technical convergences and societal trends in WILD computing that will shape this field.
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Roy D. Pea, Heidy Maldonado. WILD for learning: Interacting through new computing devices anytime, anywhere. K. Sawyer. The Cambridge Handbook of the Learning Sciences, New York: Cambridge University Press, pp.852-886, 2006. ⟨hal-00190630⟩

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