Social effects

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Intellectual development of pupils

Irrespective of specific content and software a laptop appears to be likely to promote the intellectual development of pupils but what negative effects are conceivable?

Media literacy

Using a laptop as a school book has the advantage of allowing interactivity but at the same time the disadvantage of offering interactivity all the time. A pupil may be tempted to make use of that interactivity (e.g. by playing games), which can become a constant distraction from more challenging tasks. Consequently pupils might need more training in media literacy in order to be able to deal with the challenge. (See: Talk:Games as learning motivation#Game control, Mentoring)

Intellectual gap between pupils and adults

The sudden increase in intellectual development can create a gap with potential for conflict between pupils and adults. The problem could be addressed with adult education and especially parent education. Parent education for mentors could create a connection between adult education and the education of pupils, which seems likely to facilitate mutual understanding and tolerance.

Pupils overqualified for the regional labor markets of developing countries

Pupils who have made good use of the potential for education of the OLPC are likely to be highly qualified and may be overqualified for the regional labor market. A logical consequence could be the goal to encourage pupils to be creative and to develop initiative to create new opportunities. Economic simulations and virtual student companies can help pupils to learn the required skills early. Access to further knowledge (e.g. Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems) may also be useful.

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