The teaching world is intensely divided by technology, with some staunchly in favor, and others vehemently against. Here, the technology experts at SchoolMart attempt to dispel the myths surrounding technology in schools.
Myth One: Technology is dangerous for students, and promotes cyberbullying. Access should be restricted for the good of our students.
Technology is merely a tool, which can be used in constructive and destructive ways. Restricting access to technology in schools can prevent teachers from accessing valuable educational resources. Many deconstructive technological habits are developed at home, not at school—so restricting student access to technology in the classroom does not necessarily help them learn how to use technology effectively. By teaching proper “netiquette,” and good digital citizenship, we can help shape student use of technology, which can translate into a safer, and kinder, technological world and a student force prepared for the digital landscape of society that lies ahead.
Myth Two: Technology can solve all of a teacher’s or student’s problems.
Again, technology is merely a tool: if implemented ineffectively, it will do little to solve learning issues in the classroom. For technology to be most effective in schools, teachers must be taught to be technologically literate. This will help them decide when the use of technology is appropriate and beneficial to students. Our educational system must meld quality teachers with quality technology, to get superior results for our students. While technology can be wonderfully beneficial to students and teachers, it would be unrealistic to consider it an independent solution for student development.
Myth Three: Technology “thinks” for the students, preventing an absorption and understanding of knowledge.
Technology should facilitate learning, not replace it. Technological tools such as calculators, spellcheck, or autocorrect can help students learn by allowing them to focus on their weaknesses, instead of devoting time to routine calculations or simple mistakes of which they are already aware. Dictionaries and thesauruses, as well as encyclopedias and countless other tools, are available online for students to access. These tools provide information, but they do not prevent students from learning: students still need to know what to research, what makes a question helpful and how to implement the knowledge they gain. Educational apps can also help bridge the gaps in understanding, creating more confident and capable students.
Myth Four: Technology distracts students, preventing meaningful learning.
While some technology can distract students, teachers can take advantage of the plethora of fun educational tools available to them online. By combining entertainment with learning, students can become more engaged, and often feel inclined to participate more so than during traditional lessons. Topics that were once considered “boring” have now been revitalized with a number of platforms, apps and programs that make lessons interactive, engaging and accessible for all learning levels. Further, students who are visual or tactile learners will be able to more intimately engage with data and knowledge, fostering better understanding of a topic.
Here at SchoolMart, we believed that properly implemented technology can change the American education system for the better, creating students who are more engaged, more connected, and better prepared for our current realities. If you are an educator or principal, contact us today for more information about the technology we can provide to you and your school!