Dividing Our World, a photo by gabyshaiman on Flickr.
How can teachers more closely connect learning experiences of the digital natives who are their students?
Teachers can connect learning experiences with the students who are digital natives by using technology as an enhancement to the standard curriculum. If the teachers incorporate technology into their lesson plans, they will capture the students’ attention and engage them into the lesson. Teachers can use technology to interact directly with the students, for example, using hand held wireless devices for group activities. Using technology to cover the course material makes it more interesting for the students.
Technology also plays a big part in the planning and organizing that the teacher has to do throughout the school year. Teachers use online databases to hold student grades and to record assignments. Teachers also use technology to prepare for lesson plans. Many teachers use the internet to research their topic ahead of time in order to give proper instruction to the students.
When working with students who are not familiar with technology, it is important that all educators accommodate the needs of those students. Changing some teaching techniques may be required in order to help the students with different technological experiences.
In my previous blog post, I talked about a new form of technology that is being used in many classrooms today: tablets. Along with tablets come apps. We typically think of apps being used for entertainment purposes such as games, but that is not always the case. There are many educational apps that help students grasp new concepts. Apps are more interactive than a standard computer. It is a portable way for students to practice their math, science, and English skills. My mom is a kindergarten teacher for children with Autism. She uses apps on a daily basis to stimulate their learning. When using apps, children are able to have fun while learning at the same time.
In chapter 2, it talked about the technological issues and trends in our educational system today. I have learned different ways to engage the students in the lesson and how to use technology as an enhancement to teaching. I have also learned about the many barriers to technology use such as technology skills, personal attitudes, teaching schedules, and curriculum requirements. I am also more aware of the digital divides and participation gaps that limit the access to technology for many students. Below is a picture I found and I thought it illustrated a digital divide very well. It shows the gap of knowledge between those who have access to the internet and those who do not. When learning more about teaching philosophies, I soon realized that my preferred way of teaching is student-centered. I love the thought of using technology as a tool for class discussions and exploration.
Maloy, Robert, Verock-O’Loughlin, Ruth-Ellen, Edwards, Sharon A., and Woolf, Beverly Park (2013). Transforming Learning with New Technologies. 2nd Edition. Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc.