What's this? An actual use for iPods in the classroom? I can't say that I've ever bought into the idea that iPods can be of any use for educational purposes. However, ars technica is reporting on an initiative in Arkansas to outfit schoolbuses with wireless Internet access, laptops, and ipods so that students can spend lengthy commutes from outlying areas studying science. Some students spend upwards of three hours a day on a school bus and can now listen to podcasts, research online, and access instructional materials.
"For the duration of the program's three-year trial, students aboard Sherdian's Bus 46 will use iPods to listen to educational podcasts, and 'high ability' students will use laptop computers to connect to the Internet and interact with web-based learning programs."
While this is only being piloted on a single route in the Sherdian school district, "the Aspirnaut Initiative is the latest evidence of this emerging trend and could provide insight into the viability of mobile computing education programs," according to the article. The superintendent of the district also notes that students could actually receive course credit for participating in the program, developed by Vanderbilt University.