Thursday, December 1, 2016

The Chromebook Classroom Book Review

Chromebooks are becoming a larger part of the educational technology world and there are plenty of educators that have lots of questions about these devices. I use a Chromebook at school to organize my day and work with all of the Google Apps we use in class, but I still feel like I do not get the most out of it. That's where The Chromebook Classroom by John R. Sowash comes in.

The book starts off with the basics: Why Chromebooks? Figuring out why to go with Chromebooks and what Chromebook to go with is an important issue for teachers and administrators looking to make the change to Chromebooks. The book covers the value of different sizes of screens, touch screen capacity, durability, and the value of using Chrome as the main browser. Better yet, John provides a nice chart on the best type of Chromebooks for the different grade level of student, administrator, and secretaries. These simple insights are very helpful for people who are not sure where to start when considering Chromebooks.

Another nice part of the book shows how to move from a Microsoft world or an Apple world to Chromebooks. There is a great chart that shows which Chrome OS alternatives there are for the iOS Apps that you might have on your iPads. There was some great apps that I did not know existed that are great replacements for some of the things I have done on my iPad.

On the technical end, there is a great and helpful chapter on Chromebook management. As a classroom teacher, that does not directly impact me and the Chromebook I use, but this is perfect for the IT department and those teachers that will be responsible for managing the Chromebooks. Device enrollment, configuration, sign-in settings, update settings, and more. These are the back-end items that are key for the implementation of a Chromebook environment.

The book ends with specific lessons on using Chromebooks in K12 classrooms. There are examples of apps that support large and small group projects, individual projects, mini lesson stations, note-taking, and much more! My favorite would be showing how to create a collaborative study guide at the high school level. This looks perfect for my class and I can't wait to work that in to my lessons.

For all educators that are looking to move to Chromebooks in the classroom, The Chromebook Classroom is the book you have to get. Check it out on Amazon!

You can also reach out to John on Twitter and on his website