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There is often a lot of misunderstanding when it comes to the technology that happens in the classroom. Some people feel it is unnecessary to use devices in the classroom. Many believe that they add another element of things to ‘control’, another distraction that teachers shouldn’t have to deal with. I am sure some teachers may feel this way at times too. but others are quick to espouse the many benefits to a classroom technology offers. After all. It isn’t going anywhere is it? It will only continue to grow as a presence in our lives and increasingly in our classrooms.
So how are schools using technology to help our children learn? I had a look at the devices of my own kids and spoke to some other teachers and students to come up with a list of 30 ways technology is being used today. It is by no means an exhaustive list and there are many more ways many teachers will be incorporating it into their classrooms…but just in case you needed a few examples, here are some I came up with.
- Downloading e-books and text books (a lot less weighty and makes remembering to bring them to class & home for homework easier!)
- Pinterest boards provide ideas and collaboration for teachers
- Closed Facebook groups connecting teachers and students
- Email offers effective and quick communication between teachers and students and parents
- Students and classes creating blogs to display work and writing
- Research with unlimited resources to analyse credibility
- Create movies in apps such as imovie
- Use apps like Garageband to write songs and soundtracks
- Create slideshow presentations in Prezi, Powerpoint, Keynote etc
- Use audiobooks to listen to text rather than read
- Change font sizes to avoid eye strain and help with those visually impaired
- Game playing to practise skills such as Mathletics and Language Perfect
- Skype-ing students around the globe to connect with different cultures
- Create comics and animations using tools such as Puppetpals, Toon-do and Make Belief Comics.
- Use apps as homework diaries that can be accessed and signed off by parents (making the ‘I’ve got no homework excuse obsolete)
- Access galleries and museums around the world to view artworks and artefacts
- Listen to music from different eras
- Using a gazillion you tube videos to compliment a lesson
- The use of hashtags to create twitter conversations within a classroom or year level (with the added ability to connect with experts)
- Create surveys and analyse data using tools such as Survey Monkey
- Add QR codes to presentations and artwork for assessment and extra information
- Use Google Earth to view the globe
- Record voices to improve public speaking
- photographing a piece of work, artwork or a cooking class masterpiece to send a photo home to mum or dad
- Creating spreadsheets in Excel
- Using photo editing software to edit photos
- Interactive whiteboards
- The use of apps like Popplet to brainstorm, create mind maps, collaborate and share ideas with others
- The use of Minecraft to create a structure with limited or unlimited resources.
- Use all sorts of tools that are relevant to a child’s world, that they are familiar with and can engage with in a way that enhances their learning experience.
Now of course the success, or not, of integrating technology into the classroom is determined by many factors. The availability of ongoing professional development to teachers, the willingness of a teacher to learn and engage with the technology as well as the resources of the school and the community. The other fundamental need I believe is the ability for schools to communicate with parents to ensure they are minimising the downfalls of devices and technology in the classroom and at home, whilst helping to facilitate all the wonderful ways it can be used to enhance their child’s learning.
What other ways have you seen technology used in your child’s classroom?
This post is part of a Nuffnang native advertising series.
SchoolPlaces.com.au helps take the pressure of families looking for a private school vacancy for their child. Search real-time vacancies and claim a last-minute place at one of Australia’s leading schools. Get on board and start saving today.