Computer Explorers can help teachers and students get the most out of iPads and other technology

Photo courtesy of FreshFiber on Flickr.

This year was already shaping up to be the year when swiping replaced typing, as iPads, smartphones and other digital tablets entered classrooms in greater numbers, replacing laptops and netbooks. The news that Apple is entering the textbook market will accelerate that trend — and give teachers and students another incredible tool.

Touchscreen devices like the iPad have already proven to be incredibly popular with children and have allowed them to start interacting with technology at younger ages. With the right guidance, this early interaction should help children embrace technology and the learning opportunities that come with having access to a powerful device.

The iPad and other devices have already become a great resource for children, thanks to thousands of educational apps that make learning interactive. The tools are similar to the ones that Computer Explorers uses to help guide students through lessons. But it’s important to pick the best ones, so if you have an iPad, you might want to check out our recommendations for great free educational apps.

Apple’s latest game-changer — and the reason that iPads are likely to appear in even more classrooms in the future — is the iBooks textbook. The new device will include multimedia content; make it easy for students to look up confusing words; and allow students to highlight key concepts, make notes, run a search for content and create digital study cards.

Along the way, students will be able to tap the screen to rotate 3-D images, slide their fingers to see slideshows and zoom in on illustrations to see greater levels of detail.
An iBooks author tool will also allow teachers with Macs to create their own interactive textbooks that students can use — assuming the teacher knows how to leverage the new tools at their disposal.

Computer Explorers works hard to incorporate new technologies into classrooms in order to help teachers keep up with the pace of change and help their students stay on the cutting edge of technology. Our courses are designed to be both educational and fun. We love watching students open up to new possibilities. As they learn, they become eager to learn more.

Computer Explorers looks forward to putting these new tools into children’s hands. In Walter Isaacson’s biography of Steve Jobs, Jobs tells the story of an illiterate 6-year-old in Bogotá, Colombia, who had never seen a computer before. The child was intrigued by a journalist’s iPad. Handed the device, the child instinctively swiped the screen to unlock it and began to explore.

We think that instinctive connection speaks to the power of touchscreen devices, and to children’s innate curiosity. With the right guidance, we can’t wait to see what that child and others will do next. Want to see how Computer Explorers is guiding the next generation of students through technology? See www.computerexplorers.com.

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