Is technology benefiting student learning?

As technology became a norm within the classroom a question was raised if it is benefiting learning. 

I think that the article Technology in Today’s Classroom: Are You a Tech-Savvy Teacher?outlines what we discussed in the debate and many times with in #edtc300. For technology to be beneficial in the classroom the teacher must be comfortable and confident with it. If they are not it will not have the same amount of impact on student learning. I had so many classes that used smart boards as glorified projector screens causing them to be useless as a piece of technology. 

The main points within Top 6 benefits of using technology in the classroomare technology…

  • Improves Engagement
  • Improved Knowledge Retention
  • Encourage individual learning
  • Encourages collaboration
  • Students can learn useful life skills through technology
  • Benefits for teachers

As a future educator, I don’t want to rely on technology for the engagement of students because it may become a barrier in relationships between the students and I. All of the other areas show that a HEALTHY amount of technology in the classroom can be beneficial. 

As a student many of my peers did not have phones in elementary school but we did have tamagotchis (a small digital pet that require basic needs and could play games). Every generation is going to have a distraction from school, but why is that? Outlined in this article students say that when they are distracted they are “not paying attention” and “miss instruction” and their reasoning for this is to “stay connected” and “fight boredom”. There has to be stronger ways to help keep kids engaged and connected with each other that is also attached to the curriculum. 

 A large argument within the debate was whether cell phones were a distraction in class which I believe to be true but it does not mean that all technology is a distraction. Students will find ways to interact other items to become distracted. 

Outlined within this article Five Reasons You Shouldn’t Use Technology In The Classroom, it is explained that technology in the classroom can influence students through…

  • Privacy and Security
  • Branding
  • Equality
  • Changes to Teaching
  • Poor Technical Infrastructure

Based on both lists it is easy to see that technology helps with the actual education and learning but it is impacted by the social and political factors surrounding schools.

With healthy co-constructed rules, technology can be a great learning and assessment source. In my opinion, students’ personal devices should not be used with in the classroom because they can cause a distraction but technology such as school iPads, online resources and smart boards can be used to expand students’ education.

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