Although many adults believe that some levels of technology for students is a bit excessive, the truth is that the world is moving towards technology within everything. Every job you have requires technology, bill pay methods are online, apps are replacing customer service people, and if students are not acutely aware of the educational gadgets and devices out there that aid technology, they will inevitably be left behind by what teachers so often call the “real” world. The following is a list of items your students need to have and know how to adequately use, in order for them to become and remain successful in their future businesses.
Top Educational Gadgets for Your Child
1. Moleskine and Evernote
Perhaps one of the most amazing gadgets available out there, Moleskine lets you hand scribe notes and then convert them electronically into Evernote. Even though typing notes may be the quickest way to get the information down, it has been proven that writing notes actually helps improve the memory of what we’re writing. However, people are more likely to reflect back on their notes when they have digital copies. The Moleskine gadget mixed with the Evernote app is the perfect blend of these two parts of human nature.
2. Charging Backpack
No matter what kind of useful gadgets your student has to help them be successful, it won’t mean a thing if their gadgets are dead or constantly low on battery. Especially in urban public schools were charging in their wall ports is usually against the rules, in case the phones are stolen and someone tries to blame the school. Because of this, charging backpacks are insanely useful. Some of them even come solar powered so that the college student walking between buildings gets a boost in power before their next scheduled class.
It is no great surprise, nor is it new knowledge, that carrying around heavy textbooks on your back is often bad for you and your health. Not only that, but digital copies of books means that you can get them for cheaper (since you’re now avoiding publishing costs) and you can use convenient bookmarks and search options to find notes or highlighted pages more quickly. On top of this, the light within Kindle means that students can study on their commute back home, in shared dorm rooms, or outside in the blaring sun without the glare that phones and tablets would inevitably experience.
Fitness; something that most people overlook. The fact about school is that we are trying to get kids prepared for the world that is ahead of them. Fitbit helps students track their sleep (when they get any), their eating, and how active they are. Seeing this information in real-time is motivational for students, especially when they can use them as competitive tools amongst their friends. Health is important for studying and keeping good grades and teaching students to be mindful of their body and their needs are going to instill a much needed independent attitude for taking care of themselves.
5. External Hard Drives
I can not stress how important it is for students to have extra memory and memory that is mobile at that. Being on campus with a paper due in an hour and no way to print it off is an anxiety attack just waiting to happen. Even if your professor takes things submitted online, hard drives are necessary for collaborating with peers. Most education programs are learning the value of group projects and are therefore assigning more collaborative assignments. With a hard drive, the group can pass around the vital information without the worry of having a shared file online get ruined or accidentally changed.
6. Personal Alarms
Campus, unfortunately, is not always safe. Whether your student is in middle school, high school, or freshly starting college, all students need to be spoken to about safety measures when walking anywhere, especially at night. Even though not often talked about, personal alarms are amazing for safety. Not only can carrying one save you from an attack but having that conversation with your students will help them become more aware of their surroundings and better able to make decisions about what is and is not safe for them to do. One I use is a brand called Damsel in Defense and is, cleverly, called “holla.”
It seems so simple, and yet it is so often overlooked. While I was in school, it felt like I was constantly asking family members and teachers for their printer. Even if most assignments are submitted online, there is always something random that needs to be printed like resumes, applications, and reports. In addition, the workforce has not yet changed away from printers and students need to know how to print, fax, and scan files until the paper is completely replaced with technology. If you want to get your student way far ahead and have the funds to do so, then I definitely recommend a 3D printer. Many companies are already utilizing this tool, and the knowledge of creating through one of these will definitely look fantastic on a graduate’s resume.
8. Art Gadgets
Let us not forget about the art students. Talented as they are, even they will need to adapt to the technology of the world. Beginning with the visual artists, they could definitely benefit from becoming familiar with a Graphics Tablet. These are a great way for students to transfer their hand drawings into animations, which is the most common way that cartoonists or character artists are getting their work turned into a real income.
For performing artists who are studying music, gadgets such as Jamstik Smart Guitar would be a great investment. This is a small, mobile guitar with actual metal feeling strings that connects to an app on your phone and helps you with learning your notes and your chords. For any student studying music in an environment where the loud sound is not ideal, this gadget would be great for allowing unprohibited practice time whenever the inspiration to create arises.