Home Future of Education Technology Exploring Writable Paper-Digital Slates (Anyone Tried Any of These?)

Exploring Writable Paper-Digital Slates (Anyone Tried Any of These?)


In a recent discussion with a colleague, the concept of writable slates with a paper overlay came up. I'm honestly not entirely sure what these gadgets are generally referred to in the marketplace. The concept is a digital device that allows for a paper based or paper-like writing experience, while storing the results in a digital format.

Here are a few examples of these:

The Bamboo Slate from Wacom

As you can see, this device really does combine a paper and pen with digital storage. You can write on any paper, and the results can be stored digitally. “The Wacom Inkspace app lets you organize, edit and share your notes and sketches on your iOS or Android Bluetooth® enabled devices.”

Wacom makes a host of products like this, some that allow the use of paper over the surface and some that are for direct writing/drawing on the digital device surface.

The Slate from iskn

This is the only other device I found that allows for paper-over-digital writing and drawing.

There are many purely digital writing tablets I came across, such as this one and this one.

So, has anyone used any of these devices? How has you experience been? These seem like pretty natural additions to many classrooms and courses (art, science, design, etc.).

Have you come across other brands of digital/paper writing tablets?

Please drop a comment and share. 🙂



  1. Do you know of another slate device that you can import a photo with high resolution into and then draw over it? Similar to the iPad with apple pencil? Thanks

  2. My son got the Bambo Slate for Christmas–the small one. I’m impressed. It converts handwriting to text pretty well. It converts it to text and can save the text to a word document. Ink can also be converted to Vector. I hope to get him the larger one and keep this one for my own note-taking for teacher meetings, jotting notes to myself, etc. I have not used it to its full ability but hope to add it to my classroom tools next fall.

  3. My daughter got an iskn for Christmas and loves it. The downside is it has to be paired with a mobile device. She uses hers for artwork. There is an additional pen you can get that basically is like a stylus that allows you to create only digital or for shading and coloring in already drawn images. She also has a rocketbook and has filled it up and cleared it twice already. Another option is the lightscribe pen that uses a notebook and also connects to a mobile device. The pen also records classes and can be used for taking notes. It is similar to the rocketbook but you have the added pen which records sound and whatever you write.

  4. Very cool Keturah! Thanks for sharing, I had not heard of RocketBook. Love the configurable saving options to upload different types of content to different cloud services (Google drive, Evernote, Slack, etc., etc.).


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