Pew study finds digital technologies help and challenge teachers

A survey conducted by the Pew Research Center found that the majority of Advanced Placement and National Writing Project teachers reported that digital technology in the classroom helps them teach middle and high school students in many ways. However, at the same time, the Internet, mobile phones, and social media also bring new challenges to education environments.

The survey also found that there are “striking differences in the role of technology in wealthier school districts compared withTablet-Laptop-Lockers poorer school districts and that there are clear generational differences among teachers when it comes to their comfort with technology and its use in their classrooms.”

The teachers surveyed use a wide variety of digital tools in the learning process, including mobile phones, tablets, and e-book readers, most commonly to have students conduct research and access and submit assignments online.

To read more about the study, which was designed to explore teachers’ views of the ways today’s digital environment is shaping the research and writing habits of middle and high school students, as well as teachers’ own technology use and their efforts to incorporate new digital tools into their classrooms, click here.

Black Box tablet and laptop carts are uniquely designed to easily accommodate any type of device used in today’s classrooms.

Additional resources:
Tablet Cart Selection Guide
Charging and Storage Cart and Locker Assessment and Evaluation
White Paper: 12 Questions to Ask When Choosing a Tablet and Laptop Cart

Advertisements

Win an iPad, Chromebook, Tablet, and Laptop Cart!

Last week we announced the launch of a contest that will award a Black Box iPad®, Chromebook®, Tablet, and Laptop Cart to a lucky winner once every quarter through March 2015.

Our Tablet and Laptop Carts are perfect for schools, and safely charge and store tablets, laptops, netbooks, notebooks, and e-readers in a secure cart that adapts to changing needs and technology. Carts can also sync iPad tablets using iTunes®.12-Questions-Tablet-Laptop-Cart

The carts are uniquely designed with a standardized rack system and flexible configurations, which means that carts won’t have to be replaced every time users change or upgrade their tablets, laptops, or other devices. The carts can be easily reconfigured to meet evolving needs. User-friendly cable management bars enable simplified cable routing while also allowing easy changes. Additional options are available, including pre-wired units for maximum savings and efficiency—no IT staff is needed.

In addition, the carts were designed with safety in mind and are ideal for schools that use e-learning devices in the classroom. The carts have no ledges for children to climb, no sharp edges, and have internal electrical components for maximum safety. One option is a “pinchless” tambour door that helps prevent injury. The carts have locking doors and a locking rear-access panel to keep electronic devices secure.

To enter the Tablet and Laptop Cart Contest and get our free 12 Questions to Ask When Choosing a Tablet & Laptop Cart white paper, go to http://www.blackbox.com/CartContest.

The promotion is open to legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and the District of Columbia who are at least eighteen (18) years old at the time of entry. Full Terms and Conditions here.

12 Questions to ask when choosing a tablet and laptop cart

E-learning devices are outstanding alternatives to expensive, heavy textbooks which, all too frequently, are either obsolete the moment they are published, or contain entire chapters that are not part of the curriculum.

The “digital conversion” of schools will only grow. E-learning devices support game- and project-based learning, create a collaborative environment, reduce costs, and can improve the quality of teaching and learning. But in order to realize these benefits, the devices must be kept safe, secure, and ready to go at a moment’s notice. We’ve given you twelve important questions to ask during the Tablet/Laptop Cart buying process.

1.      Is the cart adaptable and flexible, now and in the future? Will your devices fit?

Carts for e-learning devices should be able to store, charge, and even sync a wide range of equipment, from iPad® tablets and Chromebooks® to laptops and e-readers, in the same cart. As your needs change in the future, the carts should be able to adapt to the latest technology or even hold a different type of device entirely.

For example, when considering a tablet and laptop cart, ask yourself if it can be reconfigured by swapping out the shelving, changing the slot size, etc. Technology is constantly changing, so the solution you buy today should be able to accommodate the devices you will be using two years, or more, from now.

What size devices do you have or plan on purchasing? Be sure the cart’s slot size will accommodate them, with and without a cover or case if you plan on using one.

2.       Does the cart have good cable management?

Perhaps one of the most important features to consider when choosing a cart, the time it takes to set up the wiring can add up to thousands of dollars in additional cost—both in time and labor. No one has the budget to invest in hours of IT time just to get a computer cart ready to go. An IT staff of one or two people should easily be able to wire the carts and maintain them.

User-friendly cable management bars and power brick wraps enable easy cable routing while also allowing easy changes. Some carts on the market come pre-wired for maximum savings and efficiency. When looking at carts, find out how long it would take to add each device.

If you plan to store, for example, 30 tablets in a cart, that equates to a lot of cable and power bricks. The inside of the cart can get messy very quickly.

Choose a cart with a good cable management solution that enables you to easily swap out a bad power brick or replace a cord without having to sort through spaghetti. In addition, power bricks can get hot, so be sure there is enough space around each one to facilitate cooling.

Continue reading

Laptop/Tablet Carts aid schools in transition to digital

The benefits of using electronic devices in schools are many. They can improve standardized test scores, hold hundreds of digital textbooks, increase student interaction and creativity, and, in the long run, even save money. This transition to digital will be happening sooner rather than later for the public school system in Florida.

In May 2011, Governor Rick Scott signed legislation mandating, “all adopted instructional materials for students in kindergarten through grade 12 must be provided in an electronic or digital format.” Students will be required to use digital textbooks by 2015, and similar mandates across the country mean that more and more schools will need a secure place to store, transport, and charge tablets, e-readers, and other devices.

These iPad, Chromebook, Tablet, and Laptop Carts come in many configurations to fill a school’s needs and can safely store and transport many different kinds of devices, with cases and without, in a small footprint that is the perfect size for classrooms and administrative areas. For more information, check out our brochure, or watch the video below.