Technology is a learning tool, not just a cool new thing, and this generation can be called the Net Generation due to the vast benefits computers and the Internet brings to society.
As a teacher, you now also have access to digital resources that can make your work a whole lot easier.
Digital resources are those materials that are distributed over the Internet, open and available to everyone. Teacher resource websites like reachingteachers.com.au provide free access to print-on-demand media, online publications, e-learning and shared teaching strategies.
Blending digital learning with traditional instruction strengthens the learning process for students and teachers both. Meaningful and culturally sensitive instruction does not need expensive reference materials, equipment, or time-consuming travel time.
It’s not about having students use tablets and laptops during lessons, but a holistic evidence-based approach. Read on to learn how digital resources can assist you in the classroom environment.
.5. Teaching Tools Are There for You
The least exciting aspect of using technology in the classroom is probably the most immediately useful. Digital resources also means tools and information on how to deal with the continual need to evaluate coursework, file reports, mark and deliver grades, and chart student progress.
Reduce paperwork and email clog via instructor tools, online testing and grade books, and learn what steps how other teachers all over the world use to set their lives back into balance.
- Start Them Learning Early
A generation is growing up exposed and involved with computers from a very young age, called ‘digital natives’ in a paper by Zevenbergen, Logan (2008), published in the Australian Journal of Early Childhood. With 87% of respondents marking down access to computers at home and elsewhere, computer usage and skills should no longer be treated separately from the child’s development and educational environment, but rather encouraged for how much impact it has on their sociocultural experiences.
It’s now recommended for preschool and kindergarteners to engage with computers early in life, for not only does it teach computer literacy, learning software helps them acquire proficiencies in the core subjects. More about software will be discussed later down this article.
- Find Prepared Worksheets and Lesson Plans
The most in-demand among free teacher resources! You’d be mad to miss out on these useful instructional materials, made by teachers for other teachers, all ready to use.
- Use Print On-Demand Instructional Materials
You can also stop foraging down second-hand bookstores and educational supply shops for affordable handbooks, charts, signs, and illustrations to enhance your lessons. Get them instead as quick, easy downloads from teacher resource websites.
Printing shops can usually print out these materials in plastic, tarpaulin or poster board either singly or only as many as you need. It’s still much cheaper than after going through a host of middlemen and retailers.
- Education Software, Fun, Apps and Games
When most people think of educational software for kids, they think of games and digital encylopedias. Do they really work, or do children lose track of the facts with as much fun they’re having? Providing a context for learning helps provide a strong impression associated with the facts. Knowledge retention is 17% higher for game-based learning compared to lectures.
Most games improve literacy and multi-tasking, and make failure and exploration part of the learning process instead of a demoralizing event like receiving bad grades. They may encourage persistence, a factor commonly overlooked compared to intelligence when thinking of future success.
Simulationist games give users 20% higher confidence in dealing with complex tasks similar to that which they have already experienced within the context of a game.
The gamification of learning does not have to be in electronic form, with computers and video games. Rather, what is most important is that you provide a context for students to engage with the material, to interact with and gain immediate response for their decisions, and the means to find victory. Grades and a good future are often too abstract to be appreciated in the narrative context and as a model for desired behavior.
You can encourage parents to treat game-based learning as an effective tool, instead of frivolous amusement. If your classroom can’t afford digital devices, you can find free teacher resources that present lessons in a more game-like scenario.
Visit reachingteachers.com.au to gain access to shared materials created by teachers for teachers. Connect with other educators from Australia and all over the world.