What laptop should I buy my child for online learning?

If the last couple of years have shown us anything, it’s that access to a good computer can play an essential role in your child’s education. Computers that are slow, sluggish, and complicated can really hinder your child’s learning. So, what should you be looking for when buying a school laptop for your kid 
Here at Discover Coding, we have years of experience looking for the perfect laptop for students to learn, play, and create with. Whether your child is looking for a laptop for their online school, evening video games or fun after-school classes, it’s important to spend your money wisely. We asked our expert instructors a few common questions on how to find the perfect computer for your child. 

We don’t recommend buying chrome products such as Chromebooks/ChromeOS. This is because Chrome limits the type of software you can install. It’s important that your laptop can grow with your child and their learning needs. It’s better to buy a laptop that open up your child’s learning resources rather than limiting them. 

Are you a Mac or a windows person? Whatever your answer is – start with that! Switching to another operating system that you’re not used to can cause frustration and affect productivity. Go with what you know! 

We recommend your child’s screen be 13” or larger, with at least 1366 x 768 or 1920 x 1080 (preferred) resolution. Smaller screens can be difficult for kids to see and navigate, which could cause headaches and/or frustrating learning experiences. 

Your child’s laptop should do great with 64GB or larger storage. We also recommend you find a laptop or computer with SSD (solid state drive) storage over eMMC (embedded MultiMediaCard). Most kids will not notice the difference in the other tech specs, but a slow eMMC drive will make loading apps slow. 

Now that you know how to pick the best laptop: here is Discover Coding’s top 5 recommended laptops for kids.

Durable higher end: HP Elitebook (model 640 or newer) *

Cost: ~ $1,339.00 

OS: Windows 

Screen size: 14″ diagonal FHD display 

Storage: 512 GB SSD storage 

Read more: https://www.hp.com/us-en/shop/mdp/laptops/probook-600-14-243575–1 

*this is the laptop our students use at Discover Coding

Affordable entry level: HP Stream 14

Cost: ~ $469.99 

OS: Windows 

Screen size: 14″ diagonal FHD display 

Storage: 128 GB SATA 3 TLC M.2 SSD 

Read more: https://www.hp.com/ca-en/shop/product.aspx?id=2L7H3UA&opt=ABL&sel=NTB 

Pragmatic premium: Surface Laptop Go

Cost: ~ $759.99 

OS: Windows 

Screen size: 12.4” touchscreen 

Storage: eMMC: 64GB; SSD: 128GB, 256GB 

Read more: https://www.microsoft.com/en-ca/d/surface-laptop-go/94fc0bdgq7wv 

If you are set on Chromebooks: Asus C403 – rugged, large screen.

Cost: $571.37 

OS: Chrome 

Screen size: 14” display 

Storage: 32GB eMMC. 

Read more: https://www.asus.com/ca-en/Laptops/For-Home/Chromebook/ASUS-Chromebook-C403/where-to-buy/ 

For the Apple household: the MacBook Air is plenty of computer.

Cost: ~ $1299 

OS: Mac 

Screen size: 13.3-inch Retina display18 

Storage: up to 2TB SSD 

Read more: https://www.apple.com/ca/macbook-air/ 

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