We’ve made a digital shift in most areas of our life, including inside classrooms. We’ve moved from chalkboards to virtual whiteboards. Research is done online and so are the assignments, and yet those school backpacks hang heavy and low.
It seems almost cruel to watch students burdened by the weight of their textbook while we dilly dally our way around work and life powered by a pocket-sized smartphone. Children are acquainted to gadgets like smartphones and tablets at a very young age and so it seems only reasonable to introduce gadgets - more specifically learning technology like the e-books - to the classroom too.
Talking about this new age of education, Lina Ashar, founder of Kangaroo Kids and Billabong High International School says, “The utilization of digital books as learning material in classrooms, especially in schools in India, is still in its early stages. Nevertheless, many schools are introducing e-books into the learning system to test and supplement conventional techniques.”
She thinks this is the ideal opportunity to proactively bring new technology into the classroom, and get ahead of the curve. After all, e-books seem to have the upper hand over textbooks for several reasons.
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They take up less space
To begin by stating the obvious, e-books won’t be taking up much space in your child's bag. He or she will be able to store several textbooks on one device, eliminating the need for physical storage.
They're easy to access
You don’t have to run around stores to find specific books, you can download e-books instantaneously, wherever you are. There’s no waiting in lines or waiting on shipping either and they never run out of stock.
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They're environmentally friendly
Learning through e-books eliminates the need of paper altogether, thus scoring some green goals too.
Readability is better
Fonts on an e-book can be resized to the reader's liking, making it easier to read. Most e-book readers have glare-free screens and adaptive light sensors that let you read in all light conditions, without having to strain your eyes. Some e-book readers also have software that makes it possible to turn e-books into audiobooks that can help people with disabilities.
Easy search feature
How many times have we frantically scanned through pages looking for answers hidden in corners? With an e-book, you can easily search for keywords and locate the answers you’re looking for. This makes studying and homework very convenient. You can also bookmark pages to and take notes.
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With that being said, the truth is that e-books have only recently been discovered in Indian schools. Nevertheless, Ashar thinks that eventually, educators and students will come to depend on the ease of use of digital books, and feels that the digital book will revolutionise the way kids study.
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