Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Update from Israel

A few days ago, I received in email from Migdal Ohr (We helped one of the schools in Migdal HaEmek in 2015). They reported, "We are excited to report to you that the students are utilizing the iPads and are improving their education and computers' skills."

Monday, June 8, 2015

Computer Labs for Kids to Help Foster Kids in Israel

We are excited to announce that this September we will be in Israel helping out an organization we visited back in 2009, Migdal Ohr. The name Migdal Ohr means Tower of Light and provides services to more than 10,000 children and teens in need (source wikipedia). We will have more information on this project coming soon!

Please join us in support of this endeavor. A simple way to help is to make your purchases from Amazon by selecting our charity. When you do this, Amazon donates to our organization. Please click on the link below.

 Amazon Smile

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Technology and Our Young - Is It Harmful?

I'm sure many of you have read headlines that read something like this, "Ban iPhones from Young Children" or "Too Much Screen Time is Harmful to Your Child".  I have seen these as well, and would like to present to you the following excerpt:  

Despite the widespread availability of technology, a digital divide remains. Fewer than half of children from low-income families (less than $30,000 a year) have access to computers, compared to more than 90% of those from higher-income families (more than $75,000 a year). An “app gap” also exists. More than half of children from higher income families regularly use hand-held mobile devices; just 22% from lower-income families have done so (Rideout, 2011). Lack of technological opportunity is one more potential contributor to the achievement gap, leaving large numbers of children unprepared for success (NAEYC & Fred Rogers Center on Early Learning and Children’s Media, 2012)....  
Although research on the effects and benefits of mobile digital media is limited, studies on the use of desk-top computers demonstrate that they can be highly effective in promoting children’s learning as long as software is developmentally appropriate and children are in control (NRC, 2009; Sarama & Clements, 2002, 2004). Unlike adults, who tend to work at computers in isolation, preschool and primary grade children willingly seek peer involvement and conversation if the software is engaging and interactive. Placing two seats in front of a computer encourages interaction, as does locating it in the classroom rather than in a separate computer laboratory... 
...Although research on the harmful effects of passive television-viewing is prevalent, decades of evidence exists demonstrating the educational benefits of programs such as Sesame Street and Super Why! (Linebarger, McMenamin, & Wainwright, no date; Wainwright, 2006)... 
...Despite continuing controversy, NAEYC and the Fred Rogers Center for Early Learning and Children’s Media (2012) take the position that “technology and interactive media are learning tools that, when used in intentional and developmentally appropriate ways and in conjunction with other traditional tools and materials, can support the development and learning of young children” (p. 1). (This statement focuses on interactive media, not television.)
("Effective Practices in Early Childhood Education, Building a Foundation" Second Edition by Sue Bredekamp, pages 301-302; my emphasis)

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

iPad Given to Loleta 2nd and 3rd Graders


Today Computer Labs for Kids presented the 2nd & 3rd Graders of Loleta Elementary School with an iPad. They don't even have a computer lab at this school (yet). They were so happy to get this iPad. We loaded the iPad with learning apps and they are very interested in putting it to work for them in the classroom. They sang a CHEER for Computer Labs for Kids and presented us with a Thank You card. Wonderful kids and we are happy to help!!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Favorite iPad Apps for Toddlers

As some of you might now, we have a 23 month old daughter, Elizabeth. Computer Labs for Kids was founded with the idea that kids learn best when they are exploring and having fun. So you might be curious what apps are on our daughter's iPad.

Here's the list and my comments about each one.

Toca Monsters - This app and it's sister app, Toca Kitchen allow you to explore cooking and feeding. Very fun for little ones because it lets them put the food in the monster's mouth. The monster says "yum" if they like it and makes a funny noise if they don't.

Toca Band - This app has each character playing a different instrument or singing or making some kind of noise. You can choose what ones to put on the stage together and in this way compose. It's very creative and easy to use.

Nighty Night! - Storybook that you can read together or have it read out loud. In the story you turn out the lights for the little animals. Great before bedtime.

Beck and Bo, Avokiddo ABC, & Avodkiddo Emotions  - In Beck and Bo when you move Beck and Bo they interact with objects that are spoke out loud. It helps your little one learn basic items like "bed", "boat" and so on.

Monster 1 & Monsters 2 - Sesame Street Books that make Elizabeth laugh and laugh. There's a MONSTER at the end of the book - oh no!

Frog and Fish - Storybook that you can interact with - touch and make objects move.

Peek-a-Zoo - When you click on the train cars, an animal peeks out.

Endless ABC Endless 123 ABC Alphabet - These are pricey. Get the bundle. You won't regret it. They teach your little one the letters and numbers in such an fun and entertaining way. These are by far Elizabeth's favorite apps, and I love watching her play with them because of the educational value. You move the letter "A" which is saying "A" "A" "A" into an outline of the letter and then you hear "Hurray". Fun little creatures come out and congratulate you. It goes through each letter, each number and also you put together whole words.

Little Fox - Very cute songs and music to nursery rhymes. You can touch little animals and they do different things. Simply adorable!

Poky - The Poky Little Puppy. This is a story book that lets you read the story together or reads it out loud for you.

G'night Safari - Another good nighttime book.

Wa Kingyo - Goldfish pond that when you touch the water, it moves like real water. Mind-blowing!

Rocket Reads - How Rocket Learned to Read storybook. This is another book that lets you read it with your little one or it has the read out loud to you option.

Squish - Mickey Mouse app makes Elizabeth laugh when the clay is squashed together.

Day & Night - Daniel Tiger gets dressed, takes a bath, and so on. Good for learning about putting on clothes.

That's it folks. Let me know if you like this and want more. Also we are putting together an iPad for the Lotela Elementary 2 and 3rd graders after learning the Elementary School doesn't even have a computer lab yet. If you have the heart to help, please do. We can use help making this purchase.

Friday, November 21, 2014

IDEA - Our Very Own Discovery Museum

Yesterday at our board meeting, we discussed an idea that I am very excited to share with you. For some time now, I've had a vision of Computer Labs for Kids opening our very own discovery museum. This facility would be something totally new and we would open the first one in California, the birth state of the internet and all things techie. 

I'm sure most of you have been to a Children's Discovery Museum. It's a place where kids can freely explorer and play with all sorts of science. It's designed so play IS learning. I've fallen in love with them since having a young little one. I love the openness and freedom granted to children to discover for themselves what something is by touching and playing with it. The very BEST way to learn!

The idea I have is for a Discovery Museum that wasn't possible until now (or will be in a few months).  iPad Pros. Robots you can program. Being able to paint with your fingers and no mess. Having the freedom to explore programming through exploration and play.

Mull this over and let me know if you would like to help get this started. I can use your help! My email is shira@computerlabs4kids.org.

Thanks,

Shira 








Friday, October 17, 2014

The Paperless Classroom is Coming

The Paperless Classroom is Coming

TIME – Michael Scherer/Calistoga – Oct 9, 2014, 6:17 AM – Back-to-school night this year in Mr. G's sixth-grade classroom felt a bit like an inquisition. Teacher Matthew Gudenius, a boyish, 36-year-old computer whiz who runs his class like a preteen tech startup, had…

Friday, June 27, 2014

Help Computer Labs for Kids when you buy from Amazon

Computer Labs for Kids was recently accepted into the Amazon Smile program. What this means is that when you shop on Amazon, Amazon will donate (out of their pocket) for you buying the same stuff you normally get there. Here's how to help us out. Go to this link, Support Computer Labs For Kids Inc by shopping at AmazonSmile.smile.amazon.comWhen you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon will donate to Computer Labs For Kids Inc. Support us every time you shop. and save the link to your bookmarks, so when you shop at Amazon, they donate to our cause.

Thanks folks!

Shira