Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Lit Review

 "Let's hear it for..." Teachers talk about their favourite technologies to use in the classroom. 

I really enjoyed reading this article because the teachers or principals all talked about using technology in the classroom in a positive light. They were all able to address a different kinds of technology that they felt would benefit students in today's classroom environment. 

It was especially nice to see one of the principals embracing the use of cell phones and recognizing that for teenagers cell phones are a way of life. I thought that his take on cell phones in a positive light was great, and he viewed them as something that should be used in the classroom, because they are a tool that most students have and are comfortable with using, and therefore, teachers should be taking advantage of that. 

Another teacher felt that it was important for the students to be able to connect with information outside the classroom. I could not agree more! If the students are able to research for projects using the internet with things such as an I-pod, or using websites like YouTube, it is a great way to keep the students engaged and learning in the environment which they might otherwise find quite boring. Using this technology that is available is a good way to keep the conversation in the class alive and focused on what the students are learning, and it also makes it easier for them to understand the material if they are able to research it at their own pace. 

Interactive whiteboards were also mentioned as a great technology in the article. The teacher likes them because they make it easier to give the students better visuals of what they are learning. He said that it was a better way to teach the students because they get a better idea of the visual he is trying to present to them in a science class. This is a really good point because it makes the elements that the students are learning about, more realistic and with the interactive whiteboard the teacher is able to move and rotate the objects on the screen so the students have a better idea about what it looks like. This can help in their learning because some students are big visual learners, and this technology would definitely help support that learning style. It is also more interesting than learning about things from a 2D text book and more engaging as well. 

Overall, I really enjoyed this article because it was nice to hear from the educators' point of view, what their favourite technologies were and how they like to use them, or would like to see them used in today's classrooms. These are the kind of people who are going to make the future for students a really great one, because students in society today need the kind of engagement that these educators in the article stand behind.

Article can be found here:

Final Thoughts

"How has your opinion changed, or not changed regarding technology integration?"

Over the past 11 weeks I don’t think that my opinion on technology integration has changed, I have always been avid in saying that technology needs to be present in today’s classroom because of the generation of students found in schools today. I am part of that generation that was constantly exposed to new technologies growing up and I couldn’t imagine my life without it. But in saying that, I would say I have learned how to integrate the technology I love better into the classroom, so that it serves a better purpose and the students are able to use the technology to its full potential.
This will be useful to me in the future because now that I have learned how to integrate these technologies into the classroom in more useful ways, I will be able to bring that to my classroom for my students to enjoy as much as I did in this class. This class has just opened my eyes to the world of possibilities out there for technology and it makes me want to keep learning more about what new technologies are going to be coming in the future that I could one day use in my classroom. 
I think that my favourite integration of technology was the web-quest. It was fun to make and I think it is a great way for students to make use of the internet on their own in a controlled environment. Everything that they need to complete their assignment is right there at their finger tips and it makes the lesson so much more interesting for the students. So I will definitely be using web-quests in my classroom in the future. 

Thanks Dave :)