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help a preschool teacher out!

Mon Nov 05, 2018 4:50 am

I am a preschool teacher in the USA. we have the students, who are ages from 3-5 years of age use the pi computer. The programs that we usually use is gcompris. At times this program can be hard for my students.
I was wondering if anyone had any other suggests for better programs that would fit the age group that I am working with?
Also, the PI that my program is using is about 5 to 6 years old and is starting to show its age, (it works very very slow, and freezes a lot!)
is there anything that I can do about this? or is the best bet to by new PIs.

thank you so much.

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Re: help a preschool teacher out!

Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:34 am

Welcome to the Raspberry Pi forums.

To save other people who, like me, had no idea what this package does having to research it, here is what the publisher has to say -
GCompris is a high quality educational software suite, including a large number of activities for children aged 2 to 10.

Some of the activities are game orientated, but nonetheless still educational.

Here is the list of activity categories with some examples:

computer discovery: keyboard, mouse, touchscreen ...
reading: letters, words, reading practice, typing text ...
arithmetic: numbers, operations, table memory, enumeration, double entry table ...
science: the canal lock, the water cycle, renewable energy ...
geography: countries, regions, culture ...
games: chess, memory, align 4, hangman, tic-tac-toe ...
other: colors, shapes, Braille, learn to tell time ...
Currently GCompris offers more than 100 activities, and more are being developed. GCompris is free software, it means that you can adapt it to your own needs, improve it, and most importantly share it with children everywhere.
That's from

So without knowing anything about the package and how you use it with your children I note that it says
GCompris is free software, it means that you can adapt it to your own needs
Is it possible to take advantage of that to improve it to meet the needs of your children?

An RPi board cannot 'wear out'.

But a more modern RPi3B+ will have much more power/speed than your model which is probably an original from when they were first announced.

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Re: help a preschool teacher out!

Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:44 am

alliep28 wrote:
Mon Nov 05, 2018 4:50 am
or is the best bet to buy new PIs.
The latest model Pi is always the best.
The recent 3B+ is still the same price ($35) as the original and is incomparably more powerful, more capable, and more modern.

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Re: help a preschool teacher out!

Mon Nov 19, 2018 5:59 pm

I just love how everybody goes to "Oh, just buy the new Raspberry Pi! It's only $35!" Teachers are limited in what they can do, including getting "new" equipment (especially here in the USA). And "buying a new R-Pi" does not solve the problem: Slow and crashing.

This sounds like either SD Card Corruption (happens over time and age), and running low on space on the SD Card. The only solution to this is make a new OS SD Card on a larger (32 - 64 GB) SD Card. You should also occasionally need to update/upgrade the OS on the card. Always have a backup SD Card, there are some cloning apps out there you can use to update your back up. I would do a backup once a week, like on Friday afternoon before the end of school, so all the kid's works of the week can be saved.

5 years would put your R-Pi as a Model B or Model B+. In my opinion, these are still viable educational systems, but there is a limit to what they can do. They are "Slow" at 700MHz, but you can boost the speed to over 1GHz in the raspi-config configuration. I would put it at 900MHz, this gives it some respectable speed and keeps it cooler; the faster the CPU goes, the more heat it produces. Their low amount of RAM (512MB) is equal to a lot of R-Pi units out there, so this is not an issue unless you are running several programs at once. Best to run the apps one at a time, quit it when done and go to the next one as needed.

Also in thinking - a 5 year old system would have a Class 4 SD Card, which are slow within themselves. If and when you upgrade the SD card to a larger size, make sure it is a Class 10. This will dramatically increase the unit's speed in accessing and loading files and apps.

Good luck on your endeavor.

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