How To Effectively Integrate Technology In Schools
Article by Stewart Wrighter
Being a teacher can be a very rewarding job, but at the same time it is equally as difficult. With the added pressures of today’s generation, being a teacher is growing into a more and more complex job. It used to be that you could design a physics experiment about compression springs and have kids fill out a worksheet, but now there seems to be the need to use technology. A simple thing about extension springs turns into a complicated mess involving computers and gadgets. Some teachers do enjoy this, but it does add extra stress onto their plate. Administrators try very hard to keep up with technology and have their school be innovative, but there are ways to do this and not to do this.
One important thing for administrators to remember when trying to incorporate technology into their school is how the students feel about it. It is often assumed that kids want everything to be on the computer and be high-tech, but they more often than not do not. Students like technology, but when it comes to school, sometimes the old-fashioned way is better. Teachers need to realize that as helpful as technology can be it can be equally as distracting. Students can admit that technology distracts them outside of school and enjoy the chance to be away from it while in school.
Another downside to technology is the issues it can cause with a school. Instituting laptop plans and things have their pros but also a lot of cons. If the internet is not working for example, the entire school basically shuts down. Class plans have to be changed and homework might not be able to be turned in if something is working properly. When assignments are written on paper and handed in manually, there are much fewer reasons for students to not turn it in on time. Whereas, if something is meant to be turned in online, if the website is not working or the student’s computer is having issues, a teacher has to extend due dates for multiple people.
In addition, many teachers feel like the increased amount of technology in schools is causing students to not learn the fundamental interaction skills they need. The less face time students get, the less they learn to work with other people in a professional setting. Kids get so used to things being fast and brief; they are not being prepared for things like interviews. The verbal skills and conversational skills that are lost in this technological age can be very bad for students.
Technology is not all bad however. If you integrate it an appropriate manner and in moderation, it can be very helpful in helping students develop. It is also good for speeding up things like the grading system and removes all the wasted papers. For group projects, online sharing sites can help students be able to work together at home. If students do not feel like they are overwhelmed with the amount of technology at their school, they will probably be very receptive to it.
About the Author
Stewart Wrighter recently reviewed the improvements in strength of compression springs for an article. He was impressed with the quality of extension springs.