As someone who works on audio products for a living but also has school-aged children, I am often asked by friends and other parents about the best audio solution for their kids while they are engaged in remote schooling. Here are my picks.
Many have purchased some form of inexpensive kid headphones that they picked up for iPads in the car, but these often are not comfortable for long periods of time and generally do not include a microphone. Others are simply relying on the built-in audio of their device, which is definitely not ideal, especially if they are sitting in a shared space in the house.
When you think about it, the things that kids really need as far as audio in a digital classroom have a lot of overlap with gaming:
- Need to have something that will stay comfortable for many hours on end
- Need a good quality microphone for clear communication
- Need to have isolation from background noises and distractions
- Need easy controls for muting/unmuting the microphone
This is why I’ve been telling all these parents to get their kids a gaming headset, and of course an Arctis from SteelSeries. The over-ear design along with the cool and breathable Airweave ear cushions means that the headset will stay comfortable all day (less on-camera fidgeting!).
Having a headset also helps block out background noise around them so they can stay focused on their classwork and not what their siblings are up to.
Having a high-quality microphone is also key. Rather than relying on the built-in mic of their iPad or Chromebook, or a basic inline microphone from standard headphones, having a noise canceling boom microphone on an Arctis headset means that the teacher will hear only the student’s voice and none of the other chaos that may be happening in the background.
My first recommendation is always the Arctis 1. It is a simple wired headset that will work on any platform. The design is super lightweight and very slim, meaning that it can even fit kids with smaller head sizes. It also features the same high-quality ClearCast microphone that you find in the entire Arctis line.
Another great option is to step up to the Arctis 3. It is still a lightweight wired headset but adds the ski goggle suspension headband for even more comfort, as well as a retractable microphone so it never gets misplaced.
Finally, there are several headsets in the Arctis line that include Bluetooth, like the Arctis 3 Bluetooth, the Arctis 9, Arctis 9X, and the Arctis Pro Wireless. These can be used wirelessly with your child’s learning platform via Bluetooth and can connect to their gaming platform as well!
We hope this helps you pick an ideal headset to make e-learning easier and more convenient than ever. And of course, when school is over, these are all fantastic headsets for game time, too.