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Tablet tryout at Rachawinit School.

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Rachawinit School was one of five chosen to try out tablets under the government’s One Tablet per Child scheme. During a visit by the Bangkok Post, both teachers and students seemed quite positive about the experience 

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First-grade teacher Nannapath Sirpratath helps one of her students. CHANAT KATANYU

Yesterday, the Bangkok Post had a story about an experiment with tablet computers at Rachawinit School. The school was one of five chosen to try out tablets under the government’s One Tablet per Child scheme. In general, the experiment was quite successful with most, but not all, of the students feeling very positive about the use of their new electronic "toy". The story is rather long and here is an excerpt from the opening to start you going. You can read the full story here:

Click button to listen to Tablet trial and rightclick to download

Tablet tryout at Rachawinit School.

Voranai Vanijaka & Lamphai Intathep

By his own admission, 10-year-old Petch wasn't the most dedicated student in his fourth-grade class at Bangkok's Rachawinit School.

According to his teacher Wassana Somwan, Petch had trouble concentrating in his lessons, he couldn't sit still and his writing was not as good as other students.

But all that changed when Rachawinit was chosen as one of five pilot schools to trial Lenovo computer tablets for Grade 1 and Grade 4 students under the government's One Tablet per Child scheme.

''I like the tablet,'' says Petch. ''One time, the teacher asked what our favourite region was, so I searched the southern region and read about its traditions. This was where my grandfather came from.''

Ms Wassana only allows Petch to use the tablet if he first practises writing.

''His writing is so much better now because of it,'' she said. ''He's happy to receive compliments, to get good grades and to help other kids with their tablets.''

Students at Rachawinit School try out their new Lenovo tablets. CHANAT KATANYU

The computer tablets have also had a dramatic impact on Nannapath Sirpratath's first-graders.

Ms Nannapath trained for three days on how to use the tablets and has been teaching her first-graders with 40 of them for two hours a day from Jan 20.

''It's fun for me and it's fun for the students,'' she says, explaining the importance of ''fun'' as an effective way to educate seven year olds.

''The tablets help the students to learn better and also improve their behaviour.''

When Ms Nannapath talks to the class about Asean, she asks the students to search the word and read up online about the regional bloc. On Makha Bucha day she told her students to search for information about the religious holiday on their tablets.

''When there are pictures and colours, it's more fun and the students become more interested,'' she said, adding that textbooks are good, but they are outdated when compared to online content. Also, the textbooks don't have the colourful images to attract the attention of students.

Ms Wassana said that the fun, the excitement and the ''ability to travel the world'' have changed the classroom and her students.

''I asked them to search for Thai proverbs, and they found more results on the internet than in the textbooks, and with beautiful images,'' she said.

''It's a new toy for them full of wonder and excitement, so they become very excited about learning. Their parents too are excited,'' she added.

experiment – to try or test new ideas, methods, etc. to find out what effect they have ทดลอง
tablet computer – a small light-weight computer device shaped like a book; e.g,  iPad, Galaxy Tab, etc.
scheme – a plan that is developed by a government or large organisation in order to provide a particular service for people  แผนการ โครงการ
positive – something good ในแง่ดี
excerpt – a part of a longer story, speech, song, text, etc. บทคัดย่อ
admission – agreeing that something is true, especially when you are unhappy, sorry or surprised about it  การยอมรับ
dedicated – believing that something is very important and giving a lot of time and energy to it ซึ่งอุทิศตัวเพื่อ
concentrate – to give most of your attention to one aim or activity  เพ่งความสนใจไปยัง  มุ่งไปที่
still – not moving or quiet  นิ่ง, เงียบ, สงบ
pilot project – a plan, product or system that is used to test how good something is before introducing it โครงการนำร่อง
trial – to carry out a test, usually over a limited period of time, to discover how effective or suitable something or someone is ทดลอง
favourite – something you like the best of all similar things ที่ชอบมากที่สุด, ที่โปรดปราน, ของโปรด
region – a large area of land, usually without exact limits or borders  ภูมิภาค, ขอบเขต, แถบ, บริเวณ
tradition – a very old custom, belief, or story ประเพณี, ขนบธรรมเนียม
compliment – something nice that you say to praise someone การชมเชย, การสรรเสริญ
dramatic – sudden, very great and often surprising; exciting and impressive น่าทึ่งใจ, ตื่นเต้นเร้าใจ
impact – an effect or influence  ผลกระทบ
effective – producing the result that was intended ได้ผลดี
improve – to make better  ทำให้ดีขึ้น
behaviour – the way that someone acts or behaves พฤติกรรม, การกระทำตัว
bloc – a group of people, countries, etc. who work closely together กลุ่ม
outdated – old and no longer suitable or useful ล้าสมัย, ที่พ้นสมัย
content – the subject, ideas, or story that a piece of writing or a radio or television programme deals with เนื้อหา,สาระ
image – a photograph, painting, or other work of art that represents a person or thing รูปภาพ
attract attention – to cause people to notice someone or something
proverb – a well-known phrase or sentence that gives advice or says something that is generally true, for example ‘Waste not, want not’ ภาษิต, สุภาษิต
wonder – something that fills you with surprise and admiration สิ่งน่าพิศวง

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