Some in the teaching profession love technology and have rushed to incorporate it any way they can into their classroom.
Others - like the majority of people - are a bit more hesitant. It’s sometimes cumbersome to put into place and the benefits aren’t always immediately recognizable.
Using Technology in the Classroom
For those in the second, and much larger group, considering online independent study courses offered through Fresno Pacific University’s Office of Continuing Education could open a world of possibilities. Here are some simple ways to use technology in the classroom.
A website for the classroom is a wonderful way to start using technology in the classroom. It can simply be a place to put announcements and class photos. Or it can be a much more elaborate, including homework assignments, links to important pages and provide downloads for homework. In some districts, grades also are available online.
Create a Class Blog
Some teachers create a blog page that drives further conversation about a topic covered in class. They can also serve as bulletin boards for homework assignment reminders, posting upcoming reading assignments and providing links to more study materials.
This can prove especially useful in classes where you are covering a lot of material and must move on quickly (which is every class, right?). A blog can broaden the scope of what you are teaching, giving students more information to widen their understanding of a specific topic.
Another way to introduce technology in the classroom is by giving students an assignment where they must go to various web pages to find information about a topic. Great care needs to be put on where you send the younger students, but it’s a great way to introduce kids to the idea of research on the web.
PowerPoint offers many different options for presenting information. While it can seem intimidating to someone who has never used it before, once you try, it’s an uncomplicated way to incorporate technology in the classroom. PowerPoint offers the ability to make complicated topics easier to understand through visualization and bite-sized pieces of information.
For older students, assigning them a PowerPoint project can help them learn how to break down large topics into smaller chunks. It also, on a practical level, prepares them for the use of PowerPoint, which is prevalent in the workforce.
Plenty of sites online offer games to bolster math skills and other areas. If the goal is to get students comfortable working on a computer, this is among the fastest ways to do it. Kids always like games. PBS Kids has games, for example. But as with all things, it’s important to ensure that school leadership is OK with the site.
These are just some of the many ideas that can be used to use technology in the classroom. It’s up to each teacher to decide what’s best for them and what provides the best learning opportunities for students.