Apple sold 19.5 million iPads in the first quarter of 2013. With so many tablets in the hands of the public, it only makes sense that teachers begin to utilize the technology in the classroom. Teachers must do more than simply allow students to use iPads during the school day, they must incorporate the use of technology in a meaningful way.
1.Planned and Purposeful
Technology use in the classroom must be planned and purposeful. This means that, as a teacher, you don’t simply send kids to the computers to get them out of your hair. Any use of technology, be it the Smart board or a tablet, must enhance learning.
2.Supportive of Goals
When you construct lesson plans, you do so with goals in mind. Whether you are following content standards or a student’s IEP, your lesson plans are designed and delivered to meet a goal. The use of technology should help your students achieve their goals and meet benchmarks throughout the year. For example, if you are a special education teacher, utilize your iPad to provide reading or language arts assistance to your students via an application designed to do such a thing.
The technology you use should engage your students at an age-appropriate, subject-appropriate level. Do not be tempted to use your tablet or computer for the sole purpose of entertainment, though you can choose entertaining games, slide shows and applications provided they integrate with your lesson. Students who utilize technology in the classroom have been shown to be instantly more engaged to their peers who do not.
Using technology in the classroom means that you are in control of it. Integrating technology in the classroom means that you’re students are in control of it. A Smart board is a fantastic tool as long as your students are the ones using it. Do not use technology only as a means to deliver a lecture that you could otherwise deliver without it. Instead, let your students get hands-on with technology as a way to enhance their learning.
Instead of giving each student a gadget and having them work independently, divide your students into groups and give them a tablet to share. This type of approach helps to build collaboration and communication skills in your students.
Teachers who use technology in the classroom deliver information. Teachers who integrate technology in the classroom use it to build knowledge. For example, webquests are a favorite technology tool used by teachers that allow students to discover new information and build upon previous knowledge. A properly designed webquest engages students and helps to expand their minds.
Most homes have a computer, tablet or mobile device of some type. Use technology in your classroom as a way to include parents in their children’s education. Send home a list of websites that the class is utilizing, a list of games that will enhance instruction, or suggestions for applications that parents can use with their children. Think of technology as a way to bridge the gap between school and home.
There is more to utilizing technology in the classroom than simply plugging a computer into the corner. Today’s teachers are learning how to integrate technology in the classroom. With the proper integration, technology is a way to engage students, expand their knowledge, and encourage higher-level thinking.