© HAWKEYE Isaac Otis
Chromebooks: improvement or not?
October 26, 2016
Chromebooks enhance daily school work
For the past couple of years, we have been using Chromebooks in several classes, including English and history.
While middle school students have had their own Chromebooks to use since the 2015-2016 school year, high school students haven’t had one-on-one access until this year.
This year each high school student in the school district has received their own Chromebook along with the middle school students. We are now allowed to bring the Chromebooks home to work on our school work without having to search through website after website to get where we need to be.
I personally love the Chromebooks. They’re cheaper than laptops you can buy in an electronic store and work just as well as them too. And since I’m a student who doesn’t have a computer or laptop to work from at home, it has made it easier for me to finish my assignments.]I no longer have to walk all the way to a public library or stay for hours after school just to get all my assignments done.
Since the educational system has become more electronic/online over the years, Chromebooks have only made our lives easier. They are always there for us and our teachers no longer have to plan their lessons around whether or not they’ll have the computer carts or not.
Our school board is only thinking of us, students and teachers. They issued the Chromebooks as a way to make our school lives and lessons as easy as they possibly can.
I do get that the Chromebooks have their drawbacks, such as printing and charging. But the district thought of that.
They signed us all up for a website to print from, called Papercut, so problem one solved. And charging them? It’s not so different from remembering to charge your phone or tablet?
I’m all for the Chromebooks. They make my school life easier, they’re cheap which helps the district save money for more important things and they’re portable which means you can do your work while in the area of public Wi-Fi, such as Starbucks or Denny’s.
Chromebooks aren’t as bad as people make them out to be.
Chromebooks are not an improvement
There are many disadvantages and consequences to implementing Chromebooks at this school.
These Chromebooks have caused the Wi-Fi to be shut down which upset many students like myself
because there is no service or very little service in the school. Chromebooks are less useful offline, and with all the computers that are used, the internet is bound to run slower than usual or be down completely at some point.
One of the purposes of computer usage in schools is so that we lower paper usage and “go digital.” Instead, students have to carry notebooks and textbooks for AP classes because we have homework everyday. Overall, the weight of students’ backpacks have increased. For example, the AP Chemistry textbook weighs approximately 3 pounds and is probably not good for your back to carry for long periods of time.
Students can’t take notes on presentations or lectures and while many studies have shown that writing things down helps retain memory, it’s the opposite for me.
There are some pros to typing notes. Many teachers talk fast and even more often, students talk fast when they’re giving presentations. When people are teaching or presenting, a lot of that time goes to waiting for people to finish writing, and even when people use abbreviations and only write the important things there is still waiting.
Typing means that people can get all the necessary information faster. This also means that teachers don’t have to take time deciphering questionable handwriting.
Although Chromebooks are very useful for people who don’t have computers at home, it seems to me that it’s doing more harm than good.
While Google apps sync across devices, which is a useful feature on the Chromebooks, they can be accessed on any device that has an internet connection.
The website that lets us print from Chromebooks does not solve the printing issue because it is not widely known that the website even exists.
The battery is supposed to last for 6 hours but I still have to charge it everyday and I only use them for a maximum of 2 and a half hours a day.
A normal laptop can do everything a Chromebook can do, even access google apps, but with an easier printing process and programs that can run offline such as Microsoft Office with more capability and without sacrificing features.
An easier solution to solving all these issues, while keeping the Chromebook’s quick start up time, is to have a class set of chromebooks in classrooms without computers or even just classrooms that need it.
The system we had before was fine just the way it was.There’s no need to change a system that nobody complained about.