For years, teachers have been using whatever means available to instill learning within their students, whether it is an object lesson, a field trip or a hands-on project.
Today’s teachers have the world at their disposal through the use of technology in their classroom.
Technology is an excellent tool for teaching students with a hands-on approach to learning and seeking out knowledge.
The use of classroom technology can be something as simple as digital cameras for an art class or a journalism class, or as far-reaching and complex as laptop computers and Internet connections for each student. It may even include intricate and interactive learning software.
Here are a few ways technology can be incorporated into a learning environment:
Technology in the Classroom: Text messages and cell phone technology
Some teachers have found that cell phones are okay in the classroom for specific reasons. Texting can be used to remind students and parents of upcoming school events, homework projects, and emergency notices. Some teachers may even use texting as methods of discipline and communication with parents.
Technology in the Classroom: Email, Instant Messaging
Email is a handy tool that can supplement classroom learning. Students, teachers and parents can stay up-to-date on homework and learning via email or Instant Messaging programs such as Yahoo! or AOL.
Students might find homework easier to complete and turn in on time thanks to the ability to email it to their teacher, while parents might appreciate emailed progress reports from their child’s teachers.
Technology in the Classroom: Internet service
Most tech-savvy students and parents already know the value of the Internet for learning and research, but the cyber world offers so much more to enhance classroom experiences. Whether it’s a webinar (a web-based online seminar), a web-based chat or discussion, or an interactive classroom, the Internet provides plenty of opportunity for learning. Younger students might benefit from online learning programs such as freetypinggame.net or time4learning.com.
Technology in the Classroom: Software
A teacher who knows how to put together an engaging PowerPoint presentation will find it a helpful tool in their classroom. In addition, an easy-to-use desktop publishing program can be a worthwhile investment. Desktop publishing programs can be used by the teacher to produce fliers, newsletters and other learning material. Students can learn to use the program themselves for classroom projects. A classroom newsletter that is student-created can be a fun project for teacher and students alike and the skills learned can be carried over to other software.
Technology in the Classroom: Television
While television has been around for a number of years and is often seen as a tool for de-education, it can actually be a helpful part of classroom learning. Satellite television hookups can add to a learning environment through educational documentaries and televised seminars. Students who have access to educational DVD’s will benefit from these basic technological tools.
Whatever the means chosen by the teacher or learning institution, the use of technology in the classroom is a modern and effective means of encouraging learning and further exploration by students.