Tablets in primary schools
Good Morning all,
I've had a primary school I work with ask about using tablets as their primary machine type. The head wants iPads, but is happy to go with Android. I personally don't see how that's going to benefit the kiddies (whole new learning curve from their home Windows machines, plus no keyboard/mouse).
Does anyone know of a successful implementation of tablets and touch devices in primary schools (or any school, I guess) as opposed to having Netbooks, which I'm seeing a sharp rise in, Notebooks or the faithful PC (including thin client)?
My own thoughts are:
1. Cost. Surely purchasing [x] tablets and maintaining [x] tablets over time will become more expensive than some budget netbooks? I've seen some 2Ghz 2GB Win 7 Pro Netbooks come in at a few hundred (because of separate £80~ Win 7 license).
2. Learning Curve for the smaller kiddies.
3. Do they connect to a domain? How do they store kids' work?
4. Learning to type -- forget about it.
5. 30 kids...clambering over a touch device. Asking for trouble (scratches, blemishes, drops, knocks). At least with a PC they're only going to be fighting over the keyboard/mouse which are less expensive than a curly wurly these days.
6. Lack of software -- Yes, you can get FREE and PAID apps, but can you get your standard Clicker 5, Logo, etc...?
7. Security -- can these devices use proxy settings? (I'm assuming yes). Are they susceptible to viruses, and other common problems? Can they be passworded with a user base (ie-, pupils, staff, admin, or each individual user -- AD integration with Server 200x)?
All of which are cons. The only pro I can think of is that these kids will be using touch devices for the rest of their lives. Teach em young. That said, the teachers need to be able to use them as well and, without being too harsh, most of the teachers I see daily aren't that capable with a PC.