Technology and the English Classroom
To deny the power of technology in an English classroom is to deprive students from an enriching and revolutionary experience. Unfortunately, it is hard for many English teachers to face the realization behind this analogy. Members of this outdated group feel that technology would require them to put down their beloved novels and anthologies, throw away their countless photocopies of Langston Hughes poetry, and even close down the school library all together. That is not the case, however, and this paper seeks to prove that. The limitless capacity of technology will only increase the effectiveness of English and language arts instruction. From simple video and audio samples to word processing programs, PowerPoint presentations, internet-based research, and even email and discussion postings, the opportunities to enhance student understanding and excitement in this content area are endless. By utilizing the resources technology affords, English teachers can create an interactive atmosphere prime for student learning to its fullest extent.
A simple step teachers can make to include technology in the English classroom is through audiovisual clips. One of the easiest ways to ensure student understanding is to provide them with an opportunity to see and/or hear what they are reading. For a unit on Romeo and Juliet, for example, a teacher should always include in his or her plans a day in which students actually watch a scene from the 1968 film, if not the film in its entirety. There is no better way for students to get the full impact of Tybalt and Romeo’s fight scene than by seeing it portrayed on the television screen. If video technology is unavailable, a...
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...uage arts should be aware of the benefits gained by their students when technology—in its varied forms—finds a place in daily instruction. Word processing becomes easier, research grows, and presentations evolve from “posters to PowerPoint” (Santerre 35). Teachers must utilize technology to keep up to the pace of their students’ lives and to ensure that learning takes place that is both relevant and worthwhile for all parties involved. Simply put, technology in the English classroom is essential, easily achieved, and extremely valuable.
Burke, Jim. The English Teacher’s Companion. Second Edition. Heinemann Press, 2003:
Santerre, Mary. “One Teacher’s Use of Computers and Technology: A Look inside a
Classroom.” Voices from the Middle. Vol. 7 Number 3, March 2003. the National
Council of Teachers of English: 2000