Along with the big release last week of Amplify‘s tablet, produced by the education arm of media conglomerate News Corp, came details of the product that will vie for a spot in the growing education tablet market.
Amplify’s tablet runs on the Android platform and comes pre-loaded with a curriculum that’s aligned to Common Core State Standards. It’s 10 inches long, with a hard exterior shell, and is pre-loaded with its own learning software, as well as Google Apps for Education, dictionaries, multimedia lessons, Encyclopedia Britannica, Khan Academy lessons, a graphing calculator. If the company wins rights from publishers, it can also be loaded with electronic textbooks. What’s more, teachers can keep track of students’ progress, as well as have access to classroom management tools that allow them to turn off apps when needed.
But, as Tech Crunch asks, “What in the sam hill is News Corp. doing messing around in education?”
Joel Klein, former New York City schools chancellor, and now an executive vice president at News Corp, says it’s time to shake up education. “It’s not about hardware, it’s not about devices, it’s really about learning,” Klein told NPR. ”And if this does what I believe it will do — which is enhance the teaching and learning processes — then it’s going to be a home run.”
But industry watchers have other ideas. Continue reading