Tablets vs. Textbooks (Refutation 1)

A few years ago, The New York Times did a story that covered school districts that decided to replace all of their physical textbooks with iPads loaded with digital versions of those books. It’s interesting that the arguments for the conversion from physical media to digital media (with the exception of 2) are pretty weak. The biggest reason listed for the conversion, is that it allows students and teachers to remain in contact after school and it allows students to submit assignments from home.

Why do grade school students need that kind of convenience? The answer is they don’t. Grade school students don’t need to FaceTime with their teachers after hours, they can wait until school the next day. It’s been the method for years in the past. Why make the change now? Same thing applies to assignment submissions, they cant wait until class starts. These schools are trying to go all digital to make things easier on them. But will they be the ones paying for it? Not everyone has smart phones. This could create a problem financially for everyone needing to buy a new device to fit the school standards. Instead a child’s school supply list saying “5 wide ruled notebooks” it says “16GB Apple iPad”. That can be very pricey.

They did however list 2 good reasons for the conversion. It was said that by going all digital, classes could be more interesting by using iPads as an interactive tool. On the flip side however, they can prove to be distracting and no one would pay attention. The best reason for the very expensive conversion is that students would not have to carry heavy books around. This can be very harmful for students. Especially at a young age. However, I think a good balance between tech and traditional methods are best. Check out the article here.

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Meet the Bloggers: Geethani Liyanage

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Hi! I am Geethani. I am studying at the Universities of Maryland, College Park, Communication major and focusing in Digital media and Visual Communication. I learned and played very traditional way. However, I enjoy new technology and gadgets: phone, laptop and GPS. I use new technology and gadgets when I “really” want them, but not always. I see new generation is a lot more relay on new devices. Many bring new gadgets to class rooms. Do we really “need” them when we learn? There are countless positive things to be said that technology has huge influence on education. But, we  know many people who have becoming over reliant on technology, getting lazy and unhealthy. I like use my laptop when I do my assignments at home. In the class room, I want to pay more attention on lecture and write my notes in my note-book – circle, underline, highlight and write short notes beyond the margin. I also hate tweeting during class time. Modern learning tool? We need a balance. So, I hope to contribute some of my ideas in this blog. Enjoy!