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EdTech Update




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Four-year-old meets the iPad

Four-year-old randson Miles is in love with Grandpa's "big iPad." Check out the whole body experience as, in his words, he "hogs" the device:

A few observations:

  • Mile's nine-year-old big brother Paul is also a fan of the iPad (as is their dad). Paul can clearly and objectively analyze the pros an cons of the iPad vs. his DSI portable game system.
  • The boys seem to make little distinction or preference between the iPad and iPod Touch.
  • Despite downloading some "educational" apps, the games are the big draw - MonkeyBall, Labrynith, and PocketGod are popular with both boys on both. Talking Carl cracks Miles up since Carl will happily repeat bad words - "poop" is a favorite. The Toy Story "e-book" only got a passing glance despite its flashiness.
  • There is no sense of old-teaching-young mentality. See Paul and Miles "teach" great grandpa Barney about this new device below. The boys, of course, needed no instruction at all in the rudiments of iPad/iPod use. (See Will Richardson's interesting comments about this here.)

  • After three days, I have not seen any self-imposed limits set by the boys on the use of these devices. I honestly believe they would pick them up before breakfast and play with them until they went to bed without a break. Is there any hope of creating games that help students solve algebra problems or interpret a sonnet thay are as compelling as even the lamest iPod game of today?

Oh, before you brand me with the title "world's worst Grandpa," let me assure you that this Memorial Day visit has also included running through the sprinkler, BB gun target shooting, practice piloting Grandpa's boat, walks, bike rides, squirt gun fights, kite flying, seeing the new Shrek movie, and a trip to the zoo (with picnic). Oh, in the real world, not virtual!




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Reader Comments (3)

My 10 month old loves it for watching YouTube videos of babies laughing. He goes a little too nuts for it. Hopefully as he grows up we'll find higher order things for him to do with it.

June 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNathan

I'd say your grand kids got a good dose of life last weekend, with and without technology.

June 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPaul C

Hi Paul,

I try to maintain a balance - spoil the children with computers and TV as well as food, movies, trips and outdoor adventures! They are heading home today (Thursday). The house just echoes for days after they're gone.

All the best,


Hi Nathan,

Thanks for the suggestion. I am amazed at how unremarkable children find such devices. In two minutes the mystery is gone and it becomes about as ingenious as a screwdriver to them!

I'm looking for the laughing babies!


June 3, 2010 | Registered CommenterDoug Johnson

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