Classrooms need more than just chalk and a few notebooks. There’s a plethora of technology out there but how do you choose what’s right for you? What’s the best technology for your particular classroom? Here are a few examples of helpful technology perfect for teachers young and old.
Teachers are finding that the addition of eReaders, or electronic books, are providing a different level of knowledge enhancement. More and more, school administrators are using these technological marvels to delve deeper into a story or novel. However, the cost of the eReaders was initially a large concern.
Public schools are perpetually under strict budget limitations; the addition of an eReader for each student seemed impossible. But, as the technology becomes more mainstream, school administrators are finding the eReaders’ pricing to be comparable to textbook pricing, if not more inexpensive. The printing and binding process for producing a textbook has risen over the years: books are decidedly more expensive.
Amazon’s Kindle eReader has led the way into many school districts; executives at Amazon realized the untapped educational applications and began offering textbooks through the Kindle platform. Each grade level can easily benefit from the textbook downloads. Amazon’s Kindle allows users to rent a textbook for a limited time or purchase it outright through mobile broadband. Teachers now have a valuable resource for exposing children to even more academic readings.
For example, a teacher may only use one or two chapters from one particular niche textbook; if the school district had to purchase this physical textbook for just a few chapters, the administration would never approve of the investment. However, inexpensive rental fees allow the teacher to use the chapters for a number of days or weeks to enhance a specific teaching module, such as learning about Hitler’s influence in World War II.
Mobile broadband, or wireless Internet access, is often overlooked but is the key factor that makes downloads to the eReaders possible. The school’s Internet account allows teachers to individually download books to each eReader without physically attaching to a computer modem; in fact, students can download the books themselves which can save precious teaching time during the school day. Books can be downloaded anywhere, like in a quiet library space. Most eReader providers, like Amazon, understand the device’s application in the school system. In response, many eReader providers are creating basic SIM only plans, as opposed to long contracts that are required of retail consumers.
Following the eReaders, the tablet PC has also infiltrated many school systems. Unlike the eReader, other teaching resources can be downloaded to the large screen tablet. For example, foreign language flash cards can be downloaded to the tablet PC from anywhere in the world. Other visuals, from pictures to movies, can be downloaded as well to enhance the learning environment. Boring class lecture? Teachers can break up a monotonous lecture period with an interactive game on the tablet PC that corresponds to the subject at hand.
Each child learns in a different way; some students learn visually from examples written on a white board, whereas other children need to hear a theory and examples before understanding the concept. The tablet PCs offer a brain stimulation that cannot be done through traditional teaching routes; virtual puzzles and quizzes can be performed on the device, allowing the student to move onto higher levels as needed. As a result, advanced students can feel challenged by higher level work.
Students requiring more help in their studies can work at their own pace without feeling left behind by faster minds. The tablet PC gives the learning power to the students to strive toward a good grade and better understanding of the world around them.
Small children benefit greatly from the tablet PC format; hand-eye coordination becomes second nature while learning the basics of math and language. Enticing games encourage the young children to move forward in their learning processes without any stress of competing with other students. As a result, the learning environment becomes more relaxed and rich at the same time.
Involving technology in the schools is another form of teaching enhancement. The future belongs to the children; teachers and parents must make an effort to excite their minds for a successful life.