Chromebook or Laptop for remote learning school year?


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Old 08-17-20, 11:01 PM
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Chromebook or Laptop for remote learning school year?

I am going to need at least one (maybe two) more computers for my kids to do online school this year. One is in 5th grade so I would at least like to get one for her and the other is in first grade so she could use one of my other ones but I may end up getting two. I am trying to decide if I should get another laptop (not too expensive, in the $500-600 range) or if I should just get a Chromebook (or maybe even 2). Everything is web based as far as I know and I do have an Office subscription for the family so I think that would work with either the web office or even the app. If I just got a $300 Chromebook, is that going to be good? With something that inexpensive, I wouldn't have to worry about her keeping it in her room all the time or anything. What do you guys think? I have no experience with Chromebooks.
 
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Old 08-18-20, 12:35 AM
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Our district passed a big millage for all students to have laptops several years ago, they all got chrome books. Out opinion was they were junk.

The biggest complaint I had was they used all the chrome operating software for word, spreadsheet etc, nothing was compatible to anything used in real work environment so could not help the kids with even basic functionality.

Eventually they will switch and have to relearn all those programs!
 
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Old 08-18-20, 05:43 AM
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I would go for an inexpensive computer/laptop over a more well loaded Chrome Book.
 
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Old 08-18-20, 06:16 AM
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I've converted a pair of ten-year old netbooks (2Gb memory) to Chromebooks.
Simply popped in SSD drives and installing the "CloudReady" (Chromium-clone) operating system.

They work ok for single-tasking, and web browsing, and since one was free and the other's 10 years old, those are the sort of laptops I'd be fine with kids having.

 
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Old 08-19-20, 04:43 PM
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I would check with the school district before buying a Chromebook.
 
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Old 08-19-20, 09:31 PM
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If it is just getting a 5th grader online, all you need is
1) your old cellphone phone,
2) an Android or iPhone to HDMI video adapter,
3) a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse.

Pair the Bluetooth KB and mouse with the phone. You can now use the PHONE like a computer.
Mirror the phone screen to a TV using HDMI, or to a VGA monitor + speakers (requires another adapter.)

Simple way to turn an old phone into a basic "computer" that's fine for web based work.

 
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Old 08-20-20, 03:45 AM
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In my opinion you are better off with a windows pc or laptop. I built my kids 2 pcs for about $500 each. You can usually find decent deals at Dell outlet store on their site. They sometimes have new open box returns or off lease business computers. I'm not much of an apple fan to advise on them.
 
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Old 09-03-20, 01:23 PM
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I think I am just going to get this HP with a i5 processor for $500. I like that this has an SSD and even at 256 GB, that will be fine as opposed to a slow 1TB HDD that most come with. And I think the 14" will be ok because the other laptop is 15.6 but a pain to lug around so it might be nice to have a smaller one in case anyone wants to bring it somewhere. What do you think?
 
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Old 09-04-20, 03:33 PM
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Iím not an expert but to me that would seem like a pretty good choice. You will be able to add an almost infinite supply of Apps for Windows 10 if you need to, whereas as others have pointed out, you have limited Apps with a Chromebook.

I donít have any kids in school and so I donít know what their online learning is like. But I would bet whatever they do online, even though it is web based and all you need is a browser (I think thatís correct these days) you (or they) might think of an App that would supplement and aid their online learning. So you would have a lot of flexibility. Looks like the laptop has all the necessary interfaces and features so it seems you wonít be limited there.

If they do a lot web based learning I donít think the SSD would necessarily speed that up because the internet speed would be the limiting factor. But it certainly wouldnít hurt and I guess depending on exactly what they are doing during lessons with respect to the local disk, it could have a significant positive impact Ė and the SSD certainly would speed up any local Apps and OS loading, etc. So it seems to me overall the SSD is a good idea.

Maybe the first grader could log on here one of these days and tell us how Windows 10 works Ė lol! (Itís amazing how fast kids pick this stuff up.)
 
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Old 09-05-20, 07:24 AM
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Post #5 said it: make sure anything you buy is compatible with school systems- this is likely just a matter of a phone call. If they require you to provide equipment they may also have a coupon code or arrangement with a retailer.
 
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Old 09-06-20, 05:42 PM
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As an avid Chromebook user, I'd highly recommend a Chromebook - as long as it's compatible (and recommended) by the school district. Over the past decade, I've had issues with cheap Windows laptops. Between viruses, malware, needing re-installation every year or two, crashes, etc., I would rather just have a computer that powers on and works.
Especially with kids in elementary/middle school, they won't have to worry about viruses, installing programs they shouldn't, etc. For a high school student, the flexibility of a laptop might give them more tools that they need or want and they'll have the background to manage it.

BUT - I think the most important is to find out what the school district really supports. I'm sure they'll say any computer will work... but you don't want to be the only student on whatever platform.
 
 

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