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Using Computers as Effective Teaching Tools

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Using Computers as Effective Teaching Tools

How can I implement technology to improve my effectiveness as a teacher? I know that students, in general, enjoy using computers in the classroom. So how can we, as teachers, take advantage of the computer as a tool to instruct? Computers are used as teaching tools often to teach through the interactive mode. Students enjoy interactive learning because they can apply the learning to the real world. I know that computers have their pitfalls in the classroom. How do I avoid these? I realize that my students will enter with various levels of knowledge and experience for computers. This can be a great challenge for instructors to incorporate into their daily lesson plans.

I assume computer based learning is highly effective and should improve test scores. I assume students are more likely to be motivate with computer designed instruction. Students have the opportunity to be creative with computer-assisted learning. I assume the computer has some downfalls to the critical thinking exercises necessary for Science courses. I also assume that computers can hinder critical thinking processes--something mentioned by Todd Oppenheimer’s article, “The Computer Delusion.” Are there methods to avoid these hindrances?

I imagine that there are more effective approaches to using computers as interactive learning tools. How do I get this information? I imagine the Internet has various resources for integrating computer based instruction into the classroom. As a Health Science teacher, I set high standards in the process of challenging my students. Critical thinking by inductive and deductive reasoning, analyzing, synthesizing, and applying information to realia--or real world context--is crucial in preparing students for college and beyond. I imagine that computers can enable my students to display these forms of learning through the utilization of computer based interactive curriculum.

The Search

Prior to my search, I was curious to why computers were not as effective as the general public assumed, as Oppenheimer had concluded. Dr. Herr, a professor of Education at California State Univerisity, Northridge, and my Methods of Teaching Science instructor, provides his seminars with ample uses for computers in education. This gave me the desire to further pursue the value of computers in the classroom on a larger scale; incorporating views and opinions nationwide.

My search for answers came from Internet resources. Using the Google search engine, I decided to inquire information expounding on Oppenheimer’s article, “The Digital Rights War.” The topic of this article centered on the pros and cons of computers in the classroom.
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