Using modern technology in the classroom can be a controversial subject. Are we becoming slaves to technology? Will technology end up replacing our teachers? This debate has raged on for years.
Technological advances have provided innovations such as educational technology apps used by both students and teachers in the classroom. These apps make it easier for teachers to assess how students are performing through automatically generated reports. These help teachers evaluate where students may need extra help.
Modern technology also allows students to progress at their own pace, because lessons can be designed to fit each students’ needs. Technology also makes learning fun for children, as they show curiosity and interest in learning when it involves technology. This also allows for differentiated learning, catering to specific ways students prefer to learn. Such examples include, visual learning through YouTube tutorials, aural learning using audio books and logical learning through certain apps and software programs.
With technology, teachers can concentrate on the important aspects of teaching rather than wasting their time making and printing learning material for students. They can receive and access assignments through online portals, so it’s paperless and better for the environment as well.
Consider as well, students’ access to the global education highway. They can easily connect with the world, broaden their minds and be introduced to cultural influences they would never have known otherwise.
It must be noted that technology and its devices can be distracting to children. They may spend more time on social media or playing games than learning lessons. They may also accidentally come across inappropriate content, or fall victim to cyber bullying. However, there are plenty of programs and software programs to restrict such use.
Also, when using technology, there may be some students that are more advanced in working with technology than others, creating an unfair advantage in the classroom. This can be remedied however, with catch-up tutorials and collaboration between students.
Students might find it a lot easier as well to cheat using today’s technology. In this case, assignments and exams would need to be structured in a way to make it harder to cheat or make exams open-book. The results can then be used to focus more on students’ abilities to solve problems than on retaining information.
Finally, there is the question of equal access. While students may each have a laptop available to them at school, it may be a different story at home and this inequality can cause issues for some students.
There are certainly a number of concerns around modern technology in the classroom, though when it comes down to it, the positives definitely outweigh the negatives. This modern, ever-changing world requires teachers to be able to change and adapt their teaching methods with it. As technology moves forward into the future, so too is the need to further incorporate it into classrooms.
Technology may never replace our teachers fully, but it will certainly help them prepare children for the future.