Technology can enhance learning in unique ways and is a growing area of education. Several increasingly popular ideas, such as blended learning, mobile learning, and connections, owe their existence to it. Most schools, however, are not cutting-edge. Although data is lacking to pinpoint precisely how people use classroom technology, five of the most common applications are here.
In the meantime, there’s still a need for more significant work to understand better how technology can function to increase the depth of knowledge, curiosity for learning, and students’ critical thinking skills. Below are some of the most common classroom technology tools that use websites or social media, reading programs, assessment programs, and the hybrid Google Classroom, laptop, or iPad setups. Afterward, it discusses some of its most common challenges.
Digital Learning Tools and Social Media
The internet and social media have allowed students to conduct research and teachers to share lesson plans, digital resources, and assessment data. Besides podcasts and multimedia, you can also access YouTube videos and other digital tools.
Frequently gaining access to facts, data, and information on the internet is one of the biggest challenges students face. Despite not being comprehensive or intelligent, this is a start. District filters or curriculum maps often restrict access, so a set of encyclopedias can serve the same purpose. There are also challenges related to student safety and privacy. Learning models are critical, but so is combining social media and digital learning tools safely that improves student understanding.
A year of reading can result in significant improvements for struggling readers. Unfortunately, most of these gains result from a more concerted effort to ‘score higher’ rather than wholesale improvements in literacy.
Taking a reading test on a $1500 computer is a remarkable irony. Designed for learners, it’s not innovative, and it probably was not in the minds of the local bank when they donated $50,000 three years ago for the lab. Students need to read to improve their reading skills in a big way. They often choose their books. They must do this outside of the classroom. The technology could be helpful if there’s a need toimprove reading levels.
Digital Field Trips
It is becoming increasingly popular, helpful, and cost-effective for teachers to use digital field trips in the classroom. Virtually exploring parks, forests, and even landmarks from your classroom is now possible with apps such as Google Streetview.
You can explore the Statue of Liberty or hike through the Grand Canyon virtually to engage students and expand learning beyond the classroom!
Gather Student Feedback
How well a classroom structure and curriculum facilitate student learning determines whether it is successful. Getting feedback from students to determine what’s working and address problems and confusion is crucial.
Engage students in daily or weekly check-ins using online surveys and polls to get their opinions on lessons and address any lingering issues. For instance, you could enquire whether drafting an essay outline would enhance their writing process. It would help to encourage them to use a classroom hashtag for their feedback and questions on social media.
Creating Digital Content
Students can display their creative talents and showcase their learning by creating digital content related to their lessons. Their ability to communicate and learn effectively is paramount when creating content, as with any other project.
Students should be able to express themselves through blogs, videos, podcasts, ebooks, flyers, and other digital art, as well as any other means they feel most comfortable with. Students’ need for creative expression and individuality contributes to their learning success.
Review and Critique Webpages
The internet is a great place to find almost anything. However, much of what you see online is not from reliable sources. If you have done research papers in the past, you might recall that your teachers or professors frequently told you not to use Wikipedia as a source. Despite this, you do not identify any instructors who explained why.
Educate your students on how to analyze and distinguish reliable web pages and sources from unreliable ones through digital literacy. Reviewing them together will help you establish and communicate what makes a good source.
Integrating technology into classrooms makes it easier for students to communicate with teachers, their peers, and their parents, contributing to students’ academic success. Using technology in your classroom can also give students a voice.
Besides providing feedback on lessons, students participate in learning activities and projects that respect their individuality and have opportunities and support to learn how to use technology creatively and safely. Students are empowered to take responsibility for their learning.