By Sarah Rovinsky
Bellbrook’s freshmen and sophomores received Google Chromebooks on September 15-16 to better prepare them for the skills necessary in an increasingly digital age. The digital revolution will begin with the underclassmen because they’ve already had experience with them in middle school. The current junior class will also be receiving the technology next year to grow the program.
Mr. Baker explained that, “Much of education is digital now. It’s conditioning students for the future and much of what they will be seeing in college; although, it seems to be more of a hybrid environment… We can get [Chromebooks] at a reasonable cost. We can provide it to kids, and it give them an opportunity to learn through that medium.”
The administration kept in mind that although books are more durable and don’t require a charger, it is important for students to know when and how to be independent of technology but also how to utilize it to their advantage when necessary.
Students reacted to the value of Chromebooks for individual students. A freshman said, “I’m not excited to have the Chromebooks again. After using them in 8th grade, I know it’s going to be a huge distraction for me in class.” A sophomore said, “I am personally excited for them because they’re easier to carry around than textbooks. But some people have trouble with technology, so it depends who you ask… Only one of my classes will be using them.” Another sophomore said, “I’m not looking forward to them because I only have four classes (out of 7) that I’ll be using them in and I think it’s overkill to have to take them everywhere. But I think they’re a good idea because we’re saving paper, and we’ll be used to the technology that we’ll depend on more as we get older.” A junior said, “I’m happy we don’t have them [this year]. It’s a bad idea because they’re a distraction, expensive, and easy to break. It’s not worth it if I’m not using them in all my classes.” A senior said, “Chromebooks are a really good idea. Our generation has a constantly changing, fast-moving attention span. The internet serves this attention span a lot better than conventional teaching methods, so involving computers and the internet in schooling means that you’ll have kids attention for a lot longer and kids may learn more. Now that is only a concept, and concepts never match reality perfectly. The problem with the Chromebooks is that they don’t work without an internet connection. Unless the school internet becomes consistently reliable, the school should’ve kept the conventional teaching methods.”