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Five Tech Gadgets for Back-to-School

Published on Aug 28, 2014 at 10:19 am in Tech Trends.

school-suppliesWe’re less than a week away from Labor Day, which for many of us signals the end of summer and the beginning of the school season. If you have kids getting back into school-mode, here are five tech gadgets to help your family transition into the fall.


From summer reading lists, to fall assignments, a Kindle Paperwhite e-reader is the perfect back-to-school tech accessory. It’s backlit with adjustable brightness, compact and lightweight — 30 percent lighter than an iPad mini. For kids, oftentimes reading from a Kindle can be less overwhelming than a book, where they see the size of the book, and how many pages they have left to read. For avid readers, a Kindle Unlimited subscription is only $10 a month.


If your family spends what seems like an infinite amount of time driving to and from school, why not spend that time listening to a podcast and learning something new. A great podcast for kids and adults alike is Stuff You Missed in History Class. In each 30-minute episode you’ll learn (or re-learn) all sorts of historical tidbits and facts, from the Spanish Flu to Blackbeard.

For younger kids, the Storynory podcast covers a new book, poem, fairytale, myth, legend or original story each week. Use Storynory’s educational filter for podcasts that can help your children practice vocabulary, learn the origin of a phrase or find answers to frequently asked questions, like “Where do Easter eggs come from?”


You can’t keep your kids from growing up too fast, but you can capture as many pictures of them as you can as they grow. Now-a-days, with the majority of home photography taken on mobile phones, those shots of the first day of school, the championship swim meet or homecoming dance may not be the highest quality. While smart phone cameras have improved drastically over the past couple years, they still can’t compare to an actual camera.

Photojojo raises the quality of your camera phone pictures up a notch by providing portable camera lenses that connect to a magnetic metal plate or ring, which adheres to the back of your phone. With six lenses, ranging from wide-angle to fisheye, the lenses work with most smartphone and tablet models.

Smart locks

With classes, extracurricular activities and varying work schedules, back-to-school is the perfect time to invest in a smart lock for your home. Rather than giving your kids, housekeeper, neighbor or dog walker a key to your house that unlocks all your doors at anytime and is infinitely copyable, with a smart lock, you can send them an invite via their mobile phone that will allow them to gain access to your home. Or, if your smart lock has a keypad, you can provide them with a pin number to key in.

Smart locks can be programed to only work on certain days, times and for certain doors. For unexpected or emergency situations, you can use your smartphone to unlock your door remotely from anywhere. Getting started in your smart lock search? Kwikset smart locks are a great option.


Preseason athletics are well underway, and if you have children who participate in football, soccer, ice hockey or any other sport that’s infamous for its concussion reports, consider investing in Reebok’s Checklight skullcap this season. Checklight, which can be worn under a helmet or on its own, includes sensors that detect whether or not an athlete has suffered a head impact at a speed and velocity indicative of a concussion. The green/yellow/red light system alerts athletes, coaches, athletic trainers and parents whether or not a player needs to be taken out of the game.


photo credit: JimmyMac210 via photopin cc