Tuesday, April 23, 2013

More about Chromebooks...

I went to a quickie training today for the implementation of the new Google Chromebooks that I will have in my classroom next year.  Read my first post here.  It sounds like an exciting venture.  
** Let me preface this post by saying, I am NOT a technology expert.  I am only sharing information that was presented to me and that I have found in my research.**

What the heck is a Chromebook, you ask?  
Well, it is an internet based netbook designed for use with the Google browser Chrome.  (My school is going to be getting 4 in every primary classroom and 5 for every intermediate classroom.  If there are times we need a class set, we will pool all of our Chromebooks to have enough.)

(This is the model we'll be getting--> The Samsung)

Why would you want to have Chromebooks instead of iPads?  
1. It is way cheaper... You can get 2 Chromebooks for the price of 1 iPad.  That means you could afford to put technology into the hands of double the students.  
2. It has an actual keyboard.  With the beginning of so many online assessments being required, students need to be able to type on an actual keyboard.  
3.  It is durable and very light.
4.  It is very individualized and secure with the use of student logins and passwords.  Students can easily access their own work from school or home through Google Drive.  Whereas an iPad that is shared is not able to be individualized for each student.

What are the drawbacks?
The Chrome Web Store does not have as many apps (they are called extensions) as iTunes but, I'm sure as more and more schools adopt Chromebooks, the Chrome Store will be offering more options.   Because it runs on the Chrome OS, it is set up a little different than a Windows or Mac OS.  (To me, it seemed a little like a combo of both.)  It will take some getting used to but, I'd be willing to bet, the kids pick up on it faster than we do.  Another drawback is that Microsoft Office is not used on a Chromebook, it uses Google Docs.  But Google has all of the same types of software and honestly, it's pretty similar in my opinion.  

I'll be getting one to play around with in a few weeks and I'll update you all more on how the process is going.  Thanks for stopping by!