Live: 300+ Best Black Friday Deals Live: Black Friday TV Deals BF Deals Under $25 BF Deals Under $50 5 BF Splurges 8 BF Must-Haves 15 Weird Amazon BF Deals BF Cheat Sheet
Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?
No, thank you

Smartphones banned? Not in this primary-school class

As part of the We Learn mobile-education project, students at Singapore's Nan Chiau Primary School finish assignments and submit homework using 3G-enabled Windows phones.

Nan Chiau Primary School

It's not unusual for schools to ban mobile devices during class, but it's a different story at Nan Chiau Primary School in Singapore. Here, 350 third-graders gaze and poke at Windows phones while their science teacher elaborates on their assignments for the day. The students are free to shoot photos and videos using their Nokia Lumia 710 smartphones to help them remember what they've learned.

Using an app called myDesk -- developed by undergraduates at the University of Michigan -- the students make diagrams and concept maps, as well as append text and photos to their assignments. Teachers are also able to use the app to review the work submitted and leave feedback.

The entire third-grade cohort is part of a pilot project called We Learn, which aims to let students take control of their learning, as well as collaborate better with their classmates.

It has supposedly resulted in an increase in students' ability to analyze and answer open-ended questions in the English and science subjects.

The We Learn mobile-education project is a joint initiative between Microsoft and Nan Chiau Primary School and backed by Qualcomm. Qualcomm has other education initiatives all over the world, including Indonesia and Vietnam, but this is the first project in which smartphones are distributed to students. The Nokia Lumia 710 was chosen as its smaller form factor and 3.7-inch screen fit the children's hands better.

(Source: Crave Asia)