This week, we learned about printed materials in my online class. Two of the resources we had for the class talked about designing and printing your very own materials using a computer desktop or laptop, and a good quality printer (Matiru, 1995 and Lamb, n.d.). Imagine the possibilities: I could write and publish a book all by myself!
We have come a long way from when the first metal press was invented by Gutenberg in Renaissance Europe the 1400s. The technology did not only “change the world of printing” (Bellis, n.d.) by making the mass-production of books possible, it also paved the way for the development of the arts and sciences (Bellis, n.d.) by making information more accessible.
Of course, the technology has undergone several major changes since but from then on, books have become synonymous to education. Aside from books, there are other print media that are used in the classroom that also serve to inform and instruct students.
Despite the advent of the internet and the availability to e-books and other digital media, I think that print media are here to stay. Personally, I prefer old-fashioned-ink-and-paper books to e-Books. I guess I just like to feel the paper when I am reading. I find the scent of a newly-bought book relaxing and exciting at the same time. The rustling sound of a page being turned is so much more delightful than the soft tapping of keypads when you scroll down a page in an e-Book. Besides, the light from the computer monitor hurts my eyes.
By the way, calling something as non-print media (like audiovisuals, e-Books and e-Journals) is actually a misnomer since it contains printed materials (Abolade, 1998). This is especially true since pictures are actually printed anyway.
Anyway, whether we call technologies we use in the classroom as print or non-print, I think the most important thing to consider when selecting, designing, and using them is to really know your target audience. From there, it will be easier to design and determine content for any material. Going back to what I said earlier, I could very well print an entire book via desktop publishing for my students. But if I don’t know the general profile of my students, it will all be for nothing.
Abolade, A. O. (1998). General techniques for evaluation of learning and instructional materials. Retrieved from http://www.unilorin.edu.ng/journals/education/ije/sept1998/GENERAL%20TECHNIQUES%20FOR%20EVALUATION%20OF%20LEARNING%20AND%20INSTRUCTIONAL%20MATER
Bellis, M. (n.d.). Johannes Gutenberg and the Printing Press. Retrieved from about.com: http://inventors.about.com/od/gstartinventors/a/Gutenberg.htm
Lamb, A. (n.d.). Designing & developing resources: Print materials (Chap 7). Building treehouses for learning: Technology in today’s classrooms, 243-272. Retrieved from http://eduscapes.com/treehouses/TJ7print.pdf
Matiru, B. (1995). Printed Media. Frankfurt am Main: IKO. Retrieved from http://collections.infocollections.org/ukedu/en/d/Jgtz016e/8.3.2.html#Jgtz016e.8.3.2