Thoughts on Chromebooks
It was a rough start with the devices. We started the semester off having a ton of issues with network connections. Our tech. department was a huge help in resolving these issues. Since fixing this problem the devices have worked as advertised. Below is a list in no particular order of my reactions to these devices:
- Slow - The devices as a whole are very slow. I will give you that they boot up very fast within 10 seconds but when switching between windows or loading Google drive they slow way down. Sometimes the device would mysteriously close windows when loading to many panes.
- App Issues - There are a ton of apps and scripts for the device some good some bad. One difference between Apple's app store and Google's is that the apps for the iPad are true apps. Some of the advertised apps in the Google Play store are not really apps but links to websites. I do love the concept of scripts and have found several of them very helpful. They are not always the easiest to find or use initially and for a common user not friendly.
- The device that was chosen is not the most sturdy of devices. We have had several mouse pad issues. The concept of the device I like a lot. A device that can be customized per user that is completely cloud based is very interesting.
- Simplicity of use - The device itself is very easy to use. It took very little time to teach the students how to use and navigate the device. From a teacher's standpoint I feel like this is a huge plus over the iPad. Some areas I would like to see improved on is the ability to install scripts and apps on the student devices.
- Creativity - I feel like I had it out for these devices from the start because I had such a great experience with the iPads. One of my dislikes of these devices is that they do not lend themselves to creativity. I feel like the students could very easily be creative with iPads. You can do almost anything on a Chromebook that you can do on an iPad but there are a lot more steps to go through.
Overall I feel that the Chromebooks are great devices because of their simplicity.