The exponential development of modern technology in the last decades did not do away with teachers. And it probably will not. It just gave them additional tools to reach their students and help them learn better.
Actually, according to a survey conducted by PBS Learning Media, 74 percent of teachers across the United States want to use technology in their classrooms.
Modern tech allows the teachers to experiment in pedagogy, and democratize the classroom. Educators state it expands and reinforces lesson content and motivates students to learn.
As the School of Education at Drexel University points out, “integration of technology in education simply refers to the use of technology to enhance the student learning experience.”
Integrating modern technology in the classroom
Many educators and parents still fear that integrating technology in the classroom can be a financial burden. For school districts, schools and parents. Yet, as Drexel University (above) points out, students do not need their own tablets or laptops to succeed with technology.
“Smartphones, computers, and tablets are already an omnipresent element of everyday life for students and teachers alike. It’s only natural that they explore technological devices in the classroom to create meaningful learning experiences for students of all ages. Integrating simple technologies such as PowerPoint, games, internet homework assignments, or online grading systems can be difference-makers in students’ growth in the classroom.”
Using modern technology can be beneficial for younger students. Teachers can use technology to build fundamental skills to prepare those students for future independent learning. Students can use interactive games to reinforce math, spelling, phonetic, and reading skills (Drexel University, above).
Such modern tech tools can at the same time help parents. They can use specialized educational online sites to “exercise fundamental skills beyond the walls of the classroom” (Drexel University).
Reasons to use modern tech in the classroom
When the pandemic set in, and remote learning became the norm at least temporarily, the use of modern technology in the current classroom became almost an imperative. But for many educators and parents, one question remains open. What does modern tech bring along?
Here is a brief list of five main reasons modern technology is overtaking the traditional classroom:
- Modern tech brings improved pupil/teacher interaction. The number of new tech tools can stimulate real-time teacher interaction with their students. This is particularly the case with kindergarten/elementary school students where the use of online or other educational games for kids brings excellent results.
- The teaching efficiency increases. For example, the days of chalk and chalkboards are more or less gone. Teachers can now use efficient tools to create new and import existing lessons and make them more accessible to students.
- Students are more inspired to learn. While traditional textbooks will not go away (yet), students are now more receptive to tech advances such as augmented reality, virtual reality, gamification, and 3D printers.
- Grading students has become more efficient and personalized. In the traditional classrooms, teachers spend hours marking students, often having to do that during their free time. With recent developments in grading tools, they can do it quickly and easily. They also can grade and collate responses in real-time, during the class itself.
- Students can learn more during the class hour. With new technology, schools can now enable students to watch lectures outside the classroom. They can then complete corresponding tasks during school hours. Teachers can then better help with answering questions.
Modern tech and its use in the classroom is yet to grow
The number of modern tech resources that enhance and augment learning is now almost countless but is yet to grow. These enhance education and make learning both more fun and effective.
While most of the current educators did their studies through traditional classroom methods, current students are digital natives. Technology has become part of their lives, even at the earliest age. They are not only more adept at using it, but it has also become an essential part of their life. That is why using modern technology is a basic skill they need as early as their kindergarten days.
Educators who are already using modern technology in the classroom speak of its benefits. Those include reinforcing lesson content and motivating students to learn. They also now have a better option to reach students with different learning styles.
Using educational games in this process, for example, becomes a necessity. These educational games expand teaching capabilities and keep the students interested and motivated. Something like Prodigy Math becomes more than just a fun game but an essential learning tool.
All this means that the days of the traditional classroom are on the way out. The classroom is now transforming into a modern tech educational powerhouse. With that process, everybody gains – students, educators, as well as parents.