Webster’s New World Dictionary defines technology as "the science of the practical or industrial arts." In the context of using technology in schools this generally refers to the use of computers and computer technology as tools and aids to help teachers teach and students learn. What technology is has changed significantly over the years. In the early 1800’s the chalkboard was new technology in schools. For today’s new technology we have interactive multimedia presentations. Today’s teacher faces the same dilemma as the teacher at the turn of the nineteenth century; what do I do with the new technology?
How can technology increase learning?
One way that technology can help to students learn is that it may keep more students interested in the subject matter for a longer amount of time. Many younger people today are attracted to computers and advanced technology. This attraction may keep them at a computer terminal learning about some subject longer than they would remain interested in a book or a lecture.
Computer assisted learning can also help to distract students from the task of learning and turn the experience into a fun one. Often games or other "fun" activities can be made available to students, which will help them learn.
The amount of information available to students through the Internet and on compact discs is nearly limitless, and is usually more current than can be available as hard copy in libraries. The access to this information is invaluable in helping students understand. Often the same information is available presented in different ways, which increases the odds that a particular student can find the information in a form that he can understand. Also, many different vie...
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...ts will quickly lose interest if they know that the equipment or information they are using is outdated.
Another problem with the use of technology in the classroom is that the teacher needs to stay on top of the technology. This requires a lot of training (and money to fund it) as well as personal time spent keeping current. The teacher also needs to constantly be creative about the way he introduces new technology into the classroom so as not to overwhelm or intimidate students.
Technology in the classroom is not new, but it is advancing at a much faster
pace than ever. It is important that teachers and schools systems keep abreast of new technology and embrace what can be a benefit to their students and discard that which is not. We must introduce students to the latest technology without over-whelming them with distractions from what they need to know.
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