Sixth, seventh and eighth-graders will be getting a modern update to English Language Arts education – a catalogue of digital curriculum featuring e-books, dramatic readings, story animations and role-playing games will be hitting classrooms the 2014-2015 school year.
News Corp’s education division, Amplify, unveiled their curriculum early this week in hopes of kick-starting the digital education movement after years of investing and research. School districts have already spent billions of dollars collectively on digital education, giving Amplify an edge in what is still a niche market.
The upcoming curriculum is very hands-on and includes role-playing games where students can act out the lives of famous authors such as Edgar Allen Poe. Textbooks will become superfluous, as all reading materials can be accessed through the digital mediums used in class. Amplify is banking on students’ digital preferences to help this program grow.
“If this succeeds, teachers will want to use this to orchestrate their lessons,” said Joel Klein, the chief executive of Amplify and former New York City schools chancellor.
Digital lessons are distributed through school districts and will cost $45 per student. Amplify is planning to roll out digital curriculum for K-12 graders in English, math and science at a later date. Lessons can be used on multiple devices, including the iPad and Google’s Chromebook. Amplify introduced its own tablet last year but not without some trouble: a North Carolina school district suspended their use of the tablet due to technical issues. No word on when Amplify will have those kinks worked out.
What do you think about this latest swing toward technology in the classroom?