The A-B-C's of Back-to-School Technology Shopping

Setting students up for success.

By on August 23, 2012

It’s back-to-school time across the country and that means it’s time to shop.

The National Retail Federation reports that nearly 6 in 10 parents will buy some kind of electronic device for their children returning to school. And the top priority on shopping lists of kids ages 8 to 18 was technology, according to an online Ebates survey, with 42 percent of respondents saying a new smartphone, laptop or tablet was at the top of their wish lists.

So when it comes to back-to-school shopping, parents can turn to the A-B-C’s:

“A” is for apps
With hundreds of educational apps to choose from, a smartphone or tablet can be an effective study and reference tool. For example, StudyDroid allows users to create flashcards online or directly on a smartphone. HomeWork helps students manage their time and homework schedules and Google Earth lets kids travel the world with the touch of a finger. 

“B” is for broadband
The integration of technology and education has been shown to increase student engagement and achievement. Equipped with a tablet or laptop, students have limitless opportunities to research their interests and expand their knowledge. Once armed with a device, students and teachers can check out Thinkfinity.org, a free online professional learning community providing access to thousands of digital resources for K-12 – all aligned with state standards.

“C” is for cellphones
GPS technology in wireless phones enables services like Family Locator, which sends a message to a parent’s phone or computer letting them know where their child is or if the child’s phone has left a designated area. 

With Usage Controls, parents can set limits on children’s data usage and on the times of day when texting and calling is allowed. So, whether it’s during school hours or after-school homework time, Usage Controls gives parents the tools to help manage their families’ use of wireless technology.

When heading out to shop for back-to-school technology, it’s as easy as starting with A-B-C.