Chromebook carts are found in almost every classroom at Richard Montgomery and are used for a variety of subjects. They can be used in writing assignments for English, interactive activities for math, and research for science. Chromebooks have brought a new sense of technological equity in the classroom, which allows easier access and less paper in assignments, more efficiency in the classroom, and overall a better quality of education.
Using computers and Google Classroom allows the school to save an enormous amount of paper. If teachers had to print class sets of assignments that are on Google Classroom, a large amount of paper would be used. Chromebooks save a significant amount of paper, which is not only good for the environment but also for organization purposes. As opposed to stuffing papers in binders and folders, more implementation of technology in the classroom allows for work to be stored in more convenient ways, including on USB drives and on school accounts.
Secondly, chromebooks offer more options for easier accessibility than paper. On their support site, Google explains that some of these accessibility features include a larger mouse, high contrast options, voice-to-text, and USB connected Braille displays. Almost all of these options are not available through papers. As a result, chromebooks offer an improved learning opportunity for vision and hearing impaired students.
While most of the aforementioned benefits of chromebooks are offered in computer labs, chromebooks are more convenient in classroom settings. Freshman Kisha Yan explained, “The class doesn’t have to move-just the cart does. [Also] it’s convenient if multiple classes need to use it.”
At RM, not every hallway has a computer lab. Even though some areas, including the English and foreign language hallways, have a few labs, chromebook carts can eliminate the time wasted walking from a class to a lab, and are overall much faster than the older computers.
Some people try to dispute the benefits of technology, but education quality is undeniably better with chromebooks. Teachers can choose whether they want hands-on technological aid or not, and the newfound option of technology introduces many new ideas into the classroom. Under no circumstances are teachers required to use the technological aid, but the option and easy access to different teaching methods greatly improves educational quality.
Others claim that with Internet access, students can get easily distracted. However, with an engaged teacher who uses Lanschool, all computers can easily be monitored on one screen with little effort. Therefore the productivity of the class will be even better than using pencils and paper, where students can get away with drawing. Furthermore, with Lanschool, students can share their screens with teachers and ask questions when necessary.
Finally, chromebooks allow for many of the Common Core standards to be held up more easily. For example, according to Scholastic, “The Common Core ELA Literacy standard W.3.6 requires that third graders be able to ‘use technology to produce and publish writing (using keyboarding skills), as well as to interact and collaborate with others.’” With chromebooks, which allow more access to keyboards and technology during school hours, this Common Core standard is much easier to fulfill.
In conclusion, chromebooks are beneficial in a learning environment because of they allow a more productive utilization of technology.
-By Shevani Tewari