We think it’s going to look a lot like this: what you see here in this Google Tablet video. A parent and child using a tablet like a book – to inspire imagination, not take it hostage. Like any good super hero cape or a musical instrument, with imagination and practice technology can become a conduit of learning.

Which makes this one of the most exciting times in the history of education publishing. So as we hang up our 2013 paper calendars and look forward, we have some ideas about about how a few things might unfold in this new era of digital learning. We’d love to hear what some of these ideas might inspire for you, too.

Happy New Year.

1. Someday, musicians will be physicians. Inspired by by the story of cello-prodigy turned street musician Nathaniel Ayers, classical musician Robert Gupta started a non-profit organization, Street Symphony, to bring healing and a sense of community to people suffering with mental illnesses in the streets and jails of Los Angeles. In this TEDTalks video, he talks about the non-profit organization, the various parallels between medicine and music.

2. Parents will still read print books to their children. Even as studies show improved test scores with tablets over textbooks, studies also show that children and adults can better retain information they read in books. It has something to do with “The Importance of Physical Locations and Human Memory.” Online, readers tend to scroll through information and lose a sense of “where” they read something. Whereas print readers tend to “know” information from a book better because they can remember where they read it on the page. If you’re looking for a few good print book ideas, we’d like to recommend these great books.

3. Physics teachers will use music recording software to teach basics in physics. “Today mixing music, tomorrow sound waves and physics,” says Geoff Diesel, who is working to find ways to use music and technology to reach his school’s at-risk and low-income students. “We’re meeting them on their turf.”

4. Downtime will return. “Downtime is to the brain what sleep is to the body,” said Dr. Rich of Harvard Medical School to the New York Times. “But kids are in a constant mode of stimulation. The headline is: bring back boredom,” added Dr. Rich, who last month gave a speech to the American Academy of Pediatrics entitled, “Finding Huck Finn: Reclaiming Childhood from the River of Electronic Screens.”

5. The “app gap” will narrow. In the first study of its kind, A Common Sense Media Research Study looked at the prevalence of computer and app learning for children ages newborn to 8 years old and dubbed the term, “app gap.” Nearly three out of four (72%) 0- to 8-year- olds have a computer at home, but access ranges from 48% among those from low-income families (less than $30,000 a year) to 91% among higher-income families (more than $75,000 a year).

6. Children will still want to stay up late, way past their bed time. Sorry. We don’t see a way around this one. Kids have been hiding under the covers reading comics and books for years. Video and computer games are quickly becoming a scapegoat for an age old problem: not enough sleep. Researchers are beginning to understand that it’s the lack of sleep, not necessarily the video games and computer exposure, that is having a negative effect on a child’s ability to retain information, according to a recent study published on the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

7. Technology will never replace the emotional bond between parents and children. Interesting enough, research is indicating that one reason children respond so well to interactive learning is because of the emotional responses created during play. As Kindermusik educators, we’ve been saying this for years: Full sensory, interactive learning strengthens a child’s ability to think, reason, create, and express.

8. In the effort to better help their children use technology in appropriate ways, parents will too. “Communication is the crux of parenting. You need to talk to your kids, or rather, listen to them,” said Larry D. Rosen PhD, in a recent study on the social impact of Facebook on kids at California State University. “The ratio of parent listen to parent talk should be at least five-to-one. Talk one minute and listen for five.” In other words, parents need to turn it off, too.

9. People will always wonder if computers are making things worse. “It’s a catastrophe,” said Alan Eaton, a charismatic Latin teacher. “When rock ’n’ roll came about, we didn’t start using it in classrooms like we’re doing with technology,” he says.

10. Kindermusik will continue to lead the way in digital publishing. We’ve been watching, carefully, the whole time as thought leaders and publishing and technology have been slowly introducing the products that have changed the world. And we’re ready. We also know that the greatest piece of technology can never be improved or replaced — and that’s the heart and mind inside every parent and child.

Happy New Year! And we’re looking forward to 2013!

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