As new literature evolves, it is important that children are well informed about the use of technology to prepare them for the current needs of the society. Learning to use new technology helps in the research of information on the internet, evaluation of Internet information, sharing of soft information, and use of document processing programs in everyday life.
Educators and parents should be at the forefront in assisting the young ones to learn to use technology in learning. Here are some ways to integrate technology in education.
#1 Technology adoption should be part of lesson planning
Adoption of new technology should part of the daily learning experience. Unfortunately, most educators set aside some time for children to learn to use technology devices and then return to their usual book lesson. However, for the kids to understand, appreciate and feel free to use technology, educators must incorporate the use of technology tools in lesson planning.
#2 Make learning interactive
Use open source software and other media resources to bring lessons to life. For example, when you are teaching in life sciences and things like trees and insects. Make the experience interactive in such a way that children see animations of the life forms on their devices. Interactive lessons encourage memory retention and concepts internalized. Have as many of these lessons as possible.
#3 Learn to use the technology yourself
It is hard for teachers to teach the use of technology that they do not fully understand. It is important for educators to get acquainted with the technology that they seek to introduce to their learners. If you want kids to use a tablet to read eBooks, read a few books from the tablet to appreciate the challenges that the new users go through in the learning process.
With the right information and practice, you can assist the young ones to understand the use of media devices with ease.
#4 Screen time is not equal to learning time
There are several screen times at home such as DVDs, television, computers and tablets. Watching Television doesn’t help a child learn because it’s passive. However, screens such as tablets and computers are interactive and can play a role in the development of your child. For example, a child can spend some time filling in puzzles in a tablet. They can apply the strategies they have learned from such an app to real life scenarios. Talking about what is happening on the screen will help a learner get the most out of their screen time. However, it’s important to realize that not every tablet or computer experience offers a great learning experience. As parent or educator, it’s important to monitor what your learners are doing with their devices carefully.
#5 Assistive technology should be availed to children with special needs
There should be equitable access to technology resources for both the physically able and the physically challenged children. The assistive technology could also be used to improve the sensory inadequacies in these challenged children. Those children with mental problems should only be given technology devices that are within their capabilities. The assistive technologies used on the rest of the kids will depend on the kind of physical challenge experienced by the child.
#6 There must be a balance of activities
As much as we would like children to learn how to use technology, we should avoid making them couch potatoes. Thus, we must provide a balance between the amounts of time spent in front of a screen with time devoted to hands-on activities. The time spent on the screen should be minimized and children taken outdoors to have some physical play. Media technology is addictive and can make learners forget all the other necessary activities.
#7 Children should be guided when they use technology
It is critical to ensure that the material that students are using is both age appropriate and ideal for their learning. This is important especially if children have access to the internet. Educators can advise parents on the proper material for their children depending on their age. Parents should enable child protection features on their devices to ensure that their kids are not exposed to harmful material.
Finally, practice makes perfect. The more learners use technological devices; the more the technology becomes a part of their daily learning experiences. They can study effectively with the use of media technologies and interactive education programs.
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