Our school district's BYOD (bring your own device) policy starts in 5th grade. Every student carries their own chromebook.
This is very important! Parents should always add their google account *before* a student adds their account. See the ProtectYoungEyes' Chromebook setup instructions (layer 3 instructions).
Controls are useful in conjunction with behavior management. See Parenting Tips.
- The Complete Guide to Chromebook Parental Controls
- Mobicip is a strong filter and great for Chromebooks
One of the most insightful comments about screens and children is: Once they have a browser and an online presence, that will become the focus of their world, not your family. While children and adolescents learn very fast, they struggle making good decisions. If you think there are things you still want to teach your children, to connect with them about, then you, as parent, will take this statement seriously. Good family agreements can guard against a wholesale “giving over to the world” while allowing a teenager to (slowly) become part of that world.
There is no one-size fits all contract - be prepared to either pick one that is only "okay" or to take time to craft one that fits your family values. Revise it over time.
- Family Device Agreement - Serious but light-hearted agreement
- Parent/Child Tech Agreement - Download (from CyberWise curriculum & works for any tech, not just smartphones)
The school district has recommended the low cost Acer Chromebook CB3-131-C3SZ and ASUS Chromebook C202SA-YS02 in the past. Here is some more information to think about. (Last updated June 2019.)
When to Buy
Significant discounts are available on prime day (usually July 16th) and after Thanksgiving. Frequently refurbished units are available at a discount.
Low Cost Recommendations
These will work fine for any student. No touch screen means they're easier to repair.
- Acer CB3-131-C3SZ with 11.6 inch screen ~$180
- ASUS C202SA-YS02 ruggedized and water resistant ~$200
More Future Proof
A Chromebook that uses USB-C to charge means extra chargers are easier. Some Chromebooks can also run android apps (usually intentionally disabled in school accounts) and some can run linux apps. Both android and linux capabilities can cause more distractions but they do make the Chromebook more future proof.
- ASUS C213SA ruggedized and water resistant, touchscreen, USB-C charging and android and linux capable ~$340
- Lenovo c330 ruggedized and water resistant, touchscreen, USB-C charging and android capable, IPS screen ~$250
Theoretically a ruggedized Chromebook can take more of a beating.
- ASUS C202SA ruggedized and water resistant ~$200
- ASUS C213SA ruggedized and water resistant, touchscreen with USB-C charging, android and linux capable ~$340
- Lenovo 500e ruggedized and water resistant, touchscreen with USB-C charging, android and linux capable, comes with stylus, IPS screen ~$300
- Touchscreen versus non-touchscreen - Touchscreens make repairs more expensive
- Screen size - 11.6" screens are easy for students to carry around and fit easily on desks
- Charging (USB-C versus non-USB-C) - More and more devices can charge by USB-C so replacing or buying additional chargers for USB-C is an advantage.
- Buyer's guide - https://www.starryhope.com/chromebooks/chromebook-comparison-chart/
- Compare by specs - https://www.chromebookspecs.com/compare