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Google Announces 2,000 Schools Now Use Chromebooks, Up 100% In 3 Months 96

Posted by samzenpus
from the have-a-machine dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Google is fearlessly trudging on with its Chromebook push in the education market. The company announced on Friday that there are now 2,000 schools using Chromebooks for Education around the world. Just three months ago, there were 1,000 schools, showing an impressive adoption rate so far."
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Google Announces 2,000 Schools Now Use Chromebooks, Up 100% In 3 Months

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  • As a teacher... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 03, 2013 @01:12PM (#42778453)

    As an educator I feel the Chrome OS has a lot of potential, but in it's current state it's the equivalent of an early palm pilot. Yes, my students could use Google Docs or look around on YouTube using a Chromebook. The issue comes in when Google Drive is underdeveloped (duplicating files with the same name etc) which confuses students and leads to me repeating myself over and over while students relearn software they've gotten used to, most web based suites are still slightly unwieldy compared to their MS Office counterparts (say I want them to create a podcast or moving film), and for what web-based apps there are it's a huge pain getting everyone registered and saving where they can remember to access it later. Much easier just to use office and a network drive.

    Basically, I'm annoyed by teachers and educational "visionaries" who just think throwing tablets at students will solve all issues, when they merely can help but not in all circumstances (relative to the cost I can find better solutions at the moment). Sure, having a projector in the class helps me expand on lessons, but I see it used incorrectly more than not (teachers lecturing from powerpoint office style), and old-school teaching methods still make up a good portion of effective teaching. Chromebooks just feel like tablets with keyboards, I'd take an old windows XP laptop cart from the dusty corner of the library over Chromebooks at the moment. It will change within 5 years I'm sure, but at the moment Chromebooks just seem like a waste of limited school funds.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 03, 2013 @02:25PM (#42778967)

    Apple and Microsoft "donate" thousands and thousands of obsolete and refurbished ipads and computers to schools every year in an effort to get kids to become reliant on their products. Here's one example. [digitaltrends.com] At least google is giving these schools modern hardware that isn't refurbished or otherwise unsellable crap.

  • Re:As a teacher... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Dcnjoe60 (682885) on Sunday February 03, 2013 @04:08PM (#42779771)

    As an educator I feel the Chrome OS has a lot of potential, but in it's current state it's the equivalent of an early palm pilot. Yes, my students could use Google Docs or look around on YouTube using a Chromebook. The issue comes in when Google Drive is underdeveloped (duplicating files with the same name etc) which confuses students and leads to me repeating myself over and over while students relearn software they've gotten used to, most web based suites are still slightly unwieldy compared to their MS Office counterparts (say I want them to create a podcast or moving film), and for what web-based apps there are it's a huge pain getting everyone registered and saving where they can remember to access it later. Much easier just to use office and a network drive.

    Basically, I'm annoyed by teachers and educational "visionaries" who just think throwing tablets at students will solve all issues, when they merely can help but not in all circumstances (relative to the cost I can find better solutions at the moment). Sure, having a projector in the class helps me expand on lessons, but I see it used incorrectly more than not (teachers lecturing from powerpoint office style), and old-school teaching methods still make up a good portion of effective teaching. Chromebooks just feel like tablets with keyboards, I'd take an old windows XP laptop cart from the dusty corner of the library over Chromebooks at the moment. It will change within 5 years I'm sure, but at the moment Chromebooks just seem like a waste of limited school funds.

    Your comments about it being easier to just use office are exactly why Microsoft basically gave Office away for almost free to schools. The idea was to make it so common that switching was hard to do. Face it, do students really need a word process that was designed for legal offices? Do they need a spreadsheet that was designed for engineers? Most of the components of Office are so overkill for primary and secondary education that one has to wonder why education is so in love with it.

    There is an answer for that. Education is no longer about teaching kids math and science and history, but instead preparing them to enter the workforce. Microsoft Office is the dominant office suite in business so by indoctrinating children in how to use it, business doesn't have to expend their resources on training employees. We have accepted that knowing Microsoft Office is needed to succeed in life so now it is taught along with math, science, english and history.

    This isn't new, it used to be a lot of people took typing in high school because it would help them in the business world. The difference is that once you learned how to type on a typewriter, you could type on any typewriter. The same is not true for office suites (other than the actual typing part). Excel and Lotus and OpenOffice were quite different except for the most basic of tasks. Same, too, for Word, WordPerfect and OpenOffice.

    Apple, pretty much gave away computers to California schools, because they knew that the kids would grow up knowing how to use Apple computers and it would build a loyal customer base for them. Microsoft took it a step further and did it with Windows and Office to not just the West Coast, but the entire country.

    And because of that, we have teachers (and school boards) believing it is too difficult to change, because whatever they are changing to is different. But, as a teacher myself, my role is not to indoctrinate students, but to enable them to think for themself. Yes, they use Microsoft products, but they are free to use other software, too. Yes, it does sometimes create more work for me, but in the days before computers, kids with poor penmanship did, too. That didn't mean that I didn't make the effort to teach them or grade their assignments.

    Educators and education shouldn't be hesitant about investigating new ways of teaching. Giving how locked in most of us are to the established technologies, it is a wonder that we ever gave up the old chalk boards for dry erase and smart boards. That said, technology always needs to be kept in perspective. It is a tool to be used in teaching. It is a means to an end, not the end, itself.

Every nonzero finite dimensional inner product space has an orthonormal basis. It makes sense, when you don't think about it.

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