Technology has triggered our advanced digital age. Paper books are out; tablets and computers are in. You can hold either five grand textbooks, or a tablet containing the information of hundreds. In school, paperwork and textbooks should be swapped for digital versions.
My social studies textbook is approximately 600 pages. Textbooks come from trees and with the growing concern of the disappearing environment, digital textbooks and paperwork will freshen the contaminated air we breathe. “The average office worker uses 10,000 pieces of paper yearly…That’s 20 reams, the equivalent of an entire tree!” We’d save an immense number of trees and create exceptional living conditions.
Printing paper is excessively expensive. For example, my Prentice Hall Math Algebra 1 textbook is $182.75. The student online version with 6-year access is $84.97. This tremendous price difference is $97.78. If you need five textbooks for five subjects, you are averaging a valuable savings of $488.90 if you buy online.
There are many beneficial features that come with online versions. For example, you can define words, copy text, highlight and flag information as you’re reading. On an Amazon Kindle, “… all of your highlighted text and notes for a particular book can be found…in “My Notes and Marks”…on your Kindle or Kindle app.” People with eyesight problems can benefit from digital reading because the text sizes can be increased to their needs. There is also the luxury of having someone read the text which can help the blind, and will come in handy when copying text to a worksheet for school.
Trading in paper books would also help students on standardized tests. Most of the new tests are online and without online reading experience, students are at a disadvantage. Online versions would provide valuable practice for digital tests allowing students to become accustomed to the layout. In my school, we are using the Smarter Balanced Tests instead of the Connecticut Mastery Tests. The majority of students aren’t looking forward to this as it’s harder to answer questions online because you have to write out your work on a separate sheet of paper. If we become more accustomed to online reading, the tests will be easier for us and therefore we will hopefully perform better.
Overall, digital versions of paperwork and textbooks are better than the 3D versions in school. “Aside from relieving the previous burden of carrying fat, heavy folders when traveling, the iPad can open the door to new, effective ways of learning.” They offer enhanced possibilities and are cheaper to maintain. In reality, digital work will eventually transcend paper versions, so why not be accustomed with digital reading sooner than later?