By Chris Yow
JEFFERSON COUNTY – Public Libraries In Jefferson County are now offering Playaway Launchpad Learning Tablets for checkout at public libraries throughout Jefferson County, including Trussville, Clay and Pinson libraries.
Pinson has around 30 tablets, as they have been utilizing them for a little more than a year.
Director Allison Scanlan said the tablets are a hit.
“These seem to work really well here,” she said. “The pre-loaded educational games are great for our young children.”
The Library Cooperative recently received a $25,000 federal grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services through the Alabama Public Library Service, and that has allowed Trussville to add some to the library, and will allow Pinson to expand their collection.
“We’re looking to add more for the teenagers and adults now,” Scanlan said. “This grant money will be very well used.”
Playaway Launchpads are designed especially for youth and are pre-loaded with high-quality, ad-free apps that are both fun and educational. Apps are grouped onto Launchpad tablets by subject area, theme, grade level and age, making it easy for parents and kids to choose a tablet with the content most appealing to them.
Every Launchpad is 100 percent secure, providing hours of interactive learning and play without the risk of exposure to unintended content.
“Because it works without internet, they are really popular here because many of the people here don’t have internet at home,” Scanlan said.
Trussville Public Library’s Lindsey Kelley said the tablets are incredibly popular. The library currently has 10 available, but most of them continue to stay checked out.
“We don’t usually have more than two on the shelves,” Kelley said.
The Launchpad content collection spans subject areas from math and science to critical thinking and creativity, and features themed learning packs including animals, princesses, fantasy, nature and more.
A custom designed user interface gives children the opportunity to make every Launchpad experience their own by creating a personal avatar, plus an informational console gives parents and educators feedback about time spent on the tablet.