IBM Donates 50 Computer Learning Systems To Help LA Preschoolers Learn English
As part of its KidSmart Early Learning Program, IBM has donated 50 computer learning centers with software featuring English and Spanish learning activities to the Los Angeles Universal Preschool (LAUP). The goals of the program are to increase access to technology for at-risk Latino preschoolers and to greatly expand their opportunities to learn and improve their English.
KidSmart is part of an initiative by IBM to foster interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers. The company's decision in this instance to focus on the Latino community is based upon recent research predicting that, by the year 2050, the United States population will be 25 percent Hispanic.
"All students deserve access to the same resources," said Gary Mangiofico, CEO of LAUP. "Some populations face a disparity, however, especially where English may be a second language. We're excited to be part of this initiative and deliver high-quality teaching resources to all of our children participating in this program."
The learning centers will be installed at each of 50 LAUP schools throughout Los Angeles County. A demonstration of the system was held Nov. 16 at the Van Nuys Civic Child Development Center, which is located in County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky's district. "IBM's early learning computers can help inspire kids to create and learn," said Yaroslavsky, "because they incorporate an element of play, engaging their minds and imaginations in a truly unique way as nothing else can."
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Scott Aronowitz is a freelance writer based in Las Vegas. He has covered the technology, advertising, and entertainment sectors for seven years. He can be reached here.