March 10, 2021

Chromebooks in the Hands of K-12 Students

Julie Jensen

Learning and Innovation Manager

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A Chromebook is both simple and complex at the same time, while catering to the needs of groups and individuals. 

Let me count the ways how I love Chromebooks in the hands of K-12 students. As an educator and a parent, I have witnessed a plethora of unique examples of students using Chromebook as an avenue to demonstrate learning. A Chromebook is both simple and complex at the same time, while catering to the needs of groups and individuals.  

3 people with a laptop on the middle person's lap

Here are some examples: 

Digital Drawings: In a recent rollout of new Chromebooks, all K-12 students had a touchscreen. Immediately, students discovered and created digital drawings with Google Keep and Page Marker, Chrome Extensions already pushed to their devices by the district. As I inquired about the incredible artwork, students explained the drawing techniques they learned in art class. However, their excitement at that moment using the digital drawing tools focused on their new-found ability to zoom in on one specific area of their work to add more details.  

Camera, Video, Audio: Chromebooks come equipped with the capability for students to take pictures with a camera, record video and create voice recordings. Students who are still developing writing and keyboarding skills can use any of these to demonstrate learning. Teachers and guardians will also benefit from authentic recordings that create a timeline of the learning process.  

ChromeVox: Chromebooks have a built-in accessibility menu of tools called ChromeVox. When planning for students to use technology, look over the ChromeVox options. Teaching students each ChromeVox tool in isolation along with authentic practice will let students decide if the tool is helpful to them right now. For example, show students how to use the ChromeVox Screen Reader when a digital site might have vocabulary beyond their ability or to simply give their eyes a break from the screen. 

ChromeVox resources:

Troubleshooting the Device: Most technology issues are human error. Therefore, understanding who is affected and what to start troubleshooting first can save everyone time. When a Chromebook issue happens, observe who is impacted: everyone or just one or very few students. The rare times when it’s everyone, you will probably experience it yourself or your students will make a collective groan. 

Learn more about troubleshooting Chromebook from our February 2, 2021, blog post: Chromebooks: One Fix All Students Should Know.

With these examples, you will find even more things to love about Chromebooks and their positive impact on student learning.

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