Tablets for Learning: Emphasis on Capturing Students' Voices

As more schools across the country begin to use tablets in classrooms, it's worth taking the time to note how other countries are incorporating tablets for learning. In this Slate article, Lisa Guernsey points out that the emphasis is less on games and interactive content and more on the iPad as a tool for capturing experiences.

"The school has an unconventional take on the iPad’s purpose. The devices are not really valued as portable screens or mobile gaming devices. Teachers I talked to seemed uninterested, almost dismissive, of animations and gamelike apps. Instead, the tablets were intended to be used as video cameras, audio recorders, and multimedia notebooks of individual students’ creations. The teachers cared most about how the devices could capture moments that told stories about their students’ experiences in school. Instead of focusing on what was coming out of the iPad, they were focused on what was going into it." [Also read The Future of Tablets in Education: Potential Vs. Reality of Consuming Media]

The Smart Way to Use iPads in the ClassroomTouch-screen tablets for young students have become all the rage. Some districts are even buying iPads for every kindergartner, a move sparking both celebration and consternation. Do we really want to give $500 devices to kids who can't even tie their shoes? What are these schools doing with these devices,...

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