Amazon echo : Cloud Computing Education at Your Child’s Command
The Amazon Echo is a voice activated tower that uses a cloud computing hosted knowledge base. With the echo’s brain being hosted on the cloud, the information will always be up to date.
Your child doesn’t have to type anything, read anything, or look anything up. Your child can simply ask a question and receive an answer! Additionally, for any information that can be accessed via the Internet, Alexa can read it to your child.
Not only is this a GREAT Assistive Technology choice for your child, think of all of the “Why?” and “How?” questions the Amazon Echo can answer for you! 😉
How the Amazon Echo Helps Your Child
The greatest benefit of the echo is that it will allow your child to work independently. Having personal independence can take a lot of the frustration out of schoolwork that involves research. It can also let your child finish his schoolwork faster because he doesn’t have to spend time trying to read things that are difficult for your child to understand.
The bottom line: Your child won’t have to spend time doing what is hard for him.. reading and researching.
How the Amazon Echo Works
Since the Amazon echo is voice activated, your child can simply talk to the echo to get information.
The Echo idly listens for it’s activation keyword. If the activation Keyword is “Alexa,” when your child wants to know something, he can start talking to the unit using that Keyword.
For example, with the activation phrase, “Alexa,” your child can say, “Okay Alexa, how big is an elephant?” The Amazon Echo tower will tell your child how big an elephant is.
The Echo was designed to be a completely hands-free, completely voice-controlled, cloud-based computer. Your child doesn’t have to know how to read or write in order to use it! This is how Amazon describes the Echo:
Echo connects to Alexa, a cloud-based voice service, to provide information, answer questions, play music, read the news, check sports scores or the weather, and more—instantly. All you have to do is ask. Echo begins working as soon as it detects the wake word. You can pick Alexa or Amazon as your wake word.
Since it is a cloud-based computing engine, the Echo is always tuned in to the latest information available and it is constantly learning through it’s input. Additionally, the Echo can be used to save grocery lists, ask for recipes, sports scores, etc., so it’s really a great device for anyone in the family.
The Amazon Echo is Ideal for ANYONE with Reading Difficulties
Ease of use for kids in each of these age groups:
a) Elementary School 6-10 years-old – For a young child, understanding the broad-reaching body of information that would be accessible through the Echo would be similar to accessibility of information on the Internet. Therefore, you would want to monitor your child’s use of the Echo. The great thing about the Echo as an alternative to research on the computer is that your child will not happen upon any imagery you don’t want him to see!
A young child may have difficulty understanding some of the language used, in the way of sophisticated vocabulary, but those can be teaching opportunities. You can explain to your child the meaning of the words, or your child can simply ask the Echo for the meaning of the word.
b) Middle School ages 11-13 years-old – The Echo is a great device for any middle school aged child. Again, your child won’t happen upon illicit images when using the Echo, so that is a big plus factor.
At this age, when a child is starting to do more research and write papers, your child would have to be able to take notes to include information in papers. The Echo would not be as easy to use for quotes as it would be to copy and paste quotes on a standard computer. However, for factual information your child needs to research, using the Echo can help your child avoid straight copying and pasting that can get kids in trouble for plagiarism and/or copyright infringement.
c) High School ages 14-18 years-old – For a high school student, there really is little in the way of drawbacks. They are basically the same as for a Middle School aged child. The Echo will speed up your child’s ability to obtain needed information with a simple voice command, so looking up formulas, terminology, dates, etc. can be much quicker when using the Echo.
Basically, the Amazon Echo can speed up your child’s homework completion by putting factual information at the tip of your child’s tongue!
The Next Best Thing: Smart Phone Usage with Google Alternative
There really isn’t a comparative alternative to using the Echo Tower other than using voice-activated searches via Google on a Smart Phone. Both iPhones and Andriod Phones have voice recognition features that can allow your child to similarly ask questions and receive answers.
Since the voice recognition search capability is a secondary feature of the smart phones, it is highly likely that the Amazon Echo will significantly outperform the smart phones. Voice activated access to information is the entire foundation on which the Echo was designed.
The Amazon Echo Is Your Always-Ready, Question-Answering, Non-Reader’s Assistant
Things just got easier for people with dyslexia and the non-readers in the world! Whether your child can read or not, the Amazon Echo can help your child quickly access information. If your child is a non-reader, struggling reader, or simply hates reading, the Amazon Echo can help your child love learning without the hassle of trying to read!