Archive for Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Students need laptops

January 20, 2009


Editor's note: Today's letters to the editor are from Southwest Junior High students learning about persuasive writing.

To the editor:

Kids carry 14 percent of their body weight in their backpacks just from schoolbooks, according to Health Scout News. But no worries, there is a simple solution, laptops for example. At Centennial Elementary School, kids can use laptops and computers instead of heavy textbooks.

Now some people might wonder how we can use computers for books. It’s simple. There are websites specifically for textbooks. If they don’t have a website, the makers of the laptops can download the textbooks onto it.

Some people think we would just play on the computers instead of doing our work. Well I have a good idea to prevent that problem. Teachers can send your assignments and notes and until you get them done certain sites can be blocked. For example, fun sites or any sites that are not used for researching are blocked. Schools can also block sites that are not child friendly.

There is also a money problem. I agree it would be very expensive the first year but you could use them over and over again. Once a year check one out to each student and at the end of the year they give the laptops back and you do it again the next year this way you save money from buying textbooks every single year. So aim for laptops not back-breaking books.

Hunter Ramer,

Southwest Junior High


mom_of_three 9 years, 3 months ago

One 4A high school around Wichita provides a laptop for each student. Good letter

average 9 years, 3 months ago

What the students need to make laptops useful is content.I know in my grandparents' era, textbooks were state-issued, state-printed primers. I honestly think it would be cheaper to hire a team of content experts in each field to keep and revise, say, a state math series. Release it to the public domain. Students could access online versions, have cell-phone versions, etc. If they wanted a printed version, the state printshop could print paperback copies for $5. I suspect the reason they don't is that the state doesn't want to be involved in the politics of textbooks. Better that a faceless multinational like Pearson takes any blame for controversies.

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