Schools embracing tablets, other technology

Schools are starting to embrace tablets and other technology.

Gone are the days when students would clamber for their turn on the single classroom computer. Now, school districts have been searching for ways to make technology more widespread among the student body. The Associated Press wrote a story on schools in Indianapolis that have been seeing a lot of success adopting tablets, a trend that has been spreading across many U.S school districts.

Cathedral High School has integrated about 900 Apple iPads for underclassmen at the school, with hundreds more expected to be introduced soon, according to the AP. By 2016, the school is hoping to go book-free. Tablets can both improve learning outcomes and help schools go green, as the move to digital technology instead of paper allows schools to save money and reduce their environmental footprint.

There are now 2,500 iPads across the district, mainly thanks to technology grants. The AP reports that Indianapolis Public Schools started adopting tablets in 2010 and students have been training on these devices since. The technology has empowered students in a variety of ways, and some administrators think that students’ facility with computers has changed the student-teacher in fruitful ways.

“Students are now part of the learning process for teachers,” Rolly Landeros, Cathedral’s CIO, told the news source. “Instead of teachers being afraid to ask for help, we now have students helping teachers be successful in the classroom.”

Education Bulletin Board said there are some pretty big advantages when it comes to incorporating tablets into the classroom, including better apps for learning, interactivity and portability for students. Obviously, tablets are much easier to carry than a sack full of back-breaking books. With e-books, students have a whole new world open to them instead of having to settle for out-of-date school textbook options.

“Digital books can provide sensory-rich, interactive and immersive reading experiences,” the news source said. “Plus, they offer portability and convenience, particularly with the ability to take and easily sync notes in the cloud. E-books can help college students save hundreds of dollars on textbooks. As a result, several schools and colleges are trying out programs to replace traditional textbooks with e-books.”

Have you seen tablets work in the classroom? What do you think of this technology as a long-term education solution? Let us know!

Kate Beckham

Kate has been lighting up the blogosphere for over 5 years, with a keen interest in social media and new malware threats. When not sitting at a café behind her Mac, you’ll usually find her scouring the racks for vintage finds or playing guitar.