While we happen to live in a privileged area when it comes to private and public education, there are many other countries and areas throughout the world who struggle when it comes to learning and literacy. Even just completing one more year of school in low-income countries can increase someone’s future pay by 10%.
One Laptop Per Child offers the opportunity for education to be advanced for all ages in areas struggling with funding for education. First off, the design of the computer is compatible for young children. It is a cheap, lightweight, heavy duty, long lasting, interconnected laptop that has a longer battery life than most computers. Additionally, the computer can be charged using alternative energy such as plugging it into a windmill or solar panel.
The laptops allow interconnected collaboration throughout the entire class. The students can see what each other are working on and learn from each other. Right now these laptops cost just over $200, however the developers are working to try to lower the price to under $100.
These laptops not only supply educational support to the children, but also a source of entertainment. The laptops can flip their screens over and turn it into an eReader, or even a little gaming system for the kids enjoyment. The antenna attached to the laptop helps it get service over a much longer distance compared to most other laptops.
In 2007 and 2008, One Laptop per Child (OLPC) offered a Get 1 Give 1 (G1G1) on their laptops. For a price of $399, a consumer in America, Canada, or the UK, could buy one of the laptops and it would also go to a kid in a developing area. However, this program was shut down in 2008 after having a hot start in sales then a quick decline. A total of about 100,000 laptops was sold over this timespan.
The One Laptop per Child Foundation has since relied on just donations to make these computers. As of 2015, OLPC had shipped over 3 million laptops around the world for children to use as educational tools. By using these laptops, children don’t only receive a needed education, but also are able to live a modern life with modern technology. No, they’re not getting the brand new MacBook by Apple, but these computers offer the students a greater and more enjoyable opportunity to learn rather than possibly receiving 20 year old books that look like they fell apart 5 years ago.