When someone asks you about elementary school, high school, or even college, I’m sure a rush of mixed feelings flood into your mind. I can also safely assume that in the muck of all those stinky “meh” feelings comes from remembering how terribly painful and annoying it was carrying around and stuffing your back pack with all those text books. It always felt like you had more hardcover text books then you had actual classes.
Once again, and to little surprise, Apple seems to have come up with a way to eliminate the need for textbooks all together. With their incredibly popular and ever-successful iPad in the hands of millions Americans, Apple is changing the game. Again. With Pearson, McGraw-Hill, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt are all working to provide digital textbooks for iPad’s for $14.99 or less.
On the surface this can be a revolutionary change to the way children learn in school. Many kids are already growing up in households where iPad’s and other similar technologies are used. They grow up accustomed to such things. The efficiency and ease children and teenagers will have in using iPad’s to pull up there History textbook will be breathtaking. No more backpacks full of books. Now just imagine your child bringing an iPad to school. Seems pretty far-fetched right?
The answer to that would be yes and no. The reality of iPad’s replacing all textbook use in school systems is as likely as every household in the US suddenly installing home solar panels on their roof tops. But a modern world where iPad’s were used alongside textbooks is incredibly likely. The cost of textbooks continue to be absurd and hardly affordable. College students can pay up to a thousand dollars a year on books, sometimes even more, just for two semesters’ worth of classes. Having a tablet with all of the classes textbooks just makes sense.
iPad’s also offer more than just “stored” textbooks. They can offer user-interactive content that books clearly are incapable of offering. A student can take notes, take quizzes, highlight, and do many countless other beneficial things with an iPad than a regular textbook. We have the power to have the entire world’s information in the palm of our fingertips. It seems perfectly logical to cross the realm of old-school teaching and finally phase out the textbook in favor of tablet computers.
Technology has and will continue to change and revolutionize our schools. Twenty years ago it was inconceivable to have a computer inside each and every class room. Who knows? In twenty years an iPad or other tablets may be used instead of textbooks.
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