Few can deny that new technologies dominate today’s world. With this in mind, teachers – whether they like it or not – are having to incorporate these new technologies into the classroom. The fact is that students today, so accustomed to a plethora of technological entertainments, will simply not be stimulated by old-fashioned lessons that are devoid of any technological input.
Indeed, research has shown that people of all ages are using new technologies on a regular basis and that they are naturally shaping the way we all think and work as well as play. Fortunately, there can be no doubt that these new technologies are more than just play and that in many ways they can be used effectively in an educational sense.
For decades now, business, medicine, science and government have incorporated technologies such as gaming and simulations into their training programs. There is no denying that it is time for teachers to follow suit. As technology has become an integral part of the lives of the younger generation, failure to incorporate it into the classroom could have disastrous results on educational standards. Fortunately, there are many ways that the technology can be used in education.
1. Social Networking
Social networking has now reached phenomenal levels. People everywhere, young and old, spend a considerable amount of time on social networks either at home or out of doors using their free laptop. Some of the best networking sites, especially for the younger generation, include MySpace, Ning and Think.com.
Twitter has become one of the most popular such sites and can be used to great effect in the classroom in a number of ways. For example, a teacher recently got his students to write tweets from the perspective of Dante. The teacher found that the students subsequently engaged better with Dante’s writings than they had done with more traditional teaching methods.
Another teacher encouraged his students to create Facebook profiles for a number of literary characters, including their likes and dislikes. Again, the benefits of the activity were found to be substantial.
4. Creating a Webpage
Creating a class webpage can be a great way of highlighting how interaction and cooperation are vital to the social world. Teachers can keep the page simple and limit it to daily posts or spend time creating a fully operational page.
5. Digital Gaming
The area of gaming is, of course, already a massive phenomenon throughout the world. Indeed, these days children spend more time gaming than watching TV. Fortunately, despite what some may believe, gaming can be more than just fun and has the advantage of allowing students to use something they are familiar with in an educational setting.
Simulation technologies such as Molecular Workbench and StarLogo can actually be more effective than gaming simply because they remove the ‘competition’ element that can be a hindrance to a certain type of student.
7. PowerPoint Game Shows
Teachers can put their free laptop to good use by coming up with PowerPoint versions of famous game shows such as the Weakest Link or Jeopardy. Templates are available to download for a variety of game shows.
8. Online Grading Systems
Making grading systems, including attendance records, more exciting by using sites such as MyGradeBook.com could encourage students to take their grades a little more seriously and can make these tasks less laborious for the teacher as well.
9. Creating Podcast
Podcasts are another feature that can be introduced to make lectures more stimulating. There are thousands available on the web to meet the requirements of students.
10. Creating Short Films
These days, creating short films is relatively straightforward and can be done using a simple desktop computer. The technology is advanced enough to allow most students to make an accomplished and professional-looking film of their own.
As we have seen, technology has now become a major factor in all lives. Incorporation of new technologies into the classroom cannot be avoided if the educational system is to keep up with the demands of the techno-obsessed student of today.
Author Bio:- The above article is composed and edited by Roxanne Peterson. She is associated with many technology and designing communities including Broadband Expert as their freelance writer and adviser. In her free time she writes articles related to technology, mobile applications, free laptop deals etc.