With the high rise of technology in the education field, it’s crucial to start using classroom digital tools in order to prepare the students for the future. We no longer ask ourselves why and when, but wonder which digital tools are useful for both teaching and learning. Some essential digital tools could be laptops, tablets, online portfolios, video presentations, podcasts, and even online school newspapers. One thing’s for sure: technology is here to stay and teachers all over the world should learn how to utilize its advantages.
Let’s discover the extraordinary benefits of classroom digital tools and how they can make education more fun and entertaining, together.
Digital tools make learning more fun
Even if we want to admit it or not, most students nowadays are more enthusiastic by technological devices than classical, printed ones. And we understand why. It’s more entertaining to look a word up in an online dictionary than to search it in an old book. More than that, many of the online dictionaries come together with the audio pronunciation of the words. In this sense, students can also improve their language skills. It’s not an easy thing for them nowadays to keep their language up to date and to maintain a high level of proficiency. That’s because students tend to use slang with their friends, considering it something cool and new. It’s not such a bad thing, as long as they’re speaking grammatically correct while in the classroom. In order to help scholars enhance this skill, the internet is filled with online pronunciation apps and tests to assess and improve language proficiency. Teachers could really take advantage of these classroom digital tools, they’re both accessible and free. Students will consider them an entertaining thing to do, and they won’t even notice they are learning whilst having fun.
Video presentations could also be enjoyable for the students. It’s much more exciting to see colorful images, infographics or diagrams on different slideshows than only regular…sheets of paper. They can opt for Microsoft PowerPoint or Prezi in order to make their projects more interesting. Podcasts are another great digital tools. You can listen to whatever piece of information you want to while eating, driving or walking. The internet is full of podcasts specific to different disciplines. Here’s a list with 50 educational podcasts. All these interactive classroom digital tools will help students find learning more captivating.
Digital tools help students work better in groups
It’s no news that when applying for a job these days, one of the requirements is to be able to work within a team. That’s why it’s so important for the students to develop this skill in high school and university. One of the best classroom digital tools in this regard is Google Drive. All students can contribute with ideas for projects by simply writing them on that Google sheet. They can also see what others are writing and how they can make connections between different theories. Maybe they won’t notice at first, but they will learn how to share different perspectives and how to best organize.
Online school newspapers could also be a great digital tool for students. More and more schools are implementing this learning opportunity nowadays. It’s really nice to be able to both write and read things regarding the news and activities within your classroom and school. Scholars usually get excited when it comes to online newspapers because they love to be informed quickly and in a technological way. And what better way to improve their writing skills than writing articles for their school’s newspaper? Another good part of having a school newspaper is that students will find both educational and everyday life subjects. They will discover what new clubs are in school, or what the results of a literature quiz that happened in the previous week are, but also learn different things like how to make friends, how to deal with peer pressure or how to get better grades. Sounds interesting and provocative, right?
Digital tools help teachers provide quick feedback to learners
Believe it or not, teachers can also give immediate feedback to their students with the help of some classroom digital tools. An example, in this case, could be the digital portfolios. A digital portfolio represents an online collection of academic assignments, projects, and work samples that extend over a designated period of time. Usually, they are made in order to examine a student’s achievements and progress over time. If published online, the teacher is able to see the portfolio and analyze it. The learner doesn’t have to wait long until the teacher gives him feedback. The same thing happens when talking about online quizzes. With these quizzes, the students receive their grades on spot. No need to wait nervously for a couple of days until they get feedback. And not to mention that online quizzes are something much cooler and contemporary than the paper printed ones. Scholars will totally love them!
Digital tools provide the best resources ever
I think we all agree on this statement. From this point of view, technology has increased beyond all our expectations. It’s simply amazing how easy and fast everything has become with the help of technology. That’s why I strongly believe it’s a great opportunity for students to introduce classroom digital tools. They can help them a lot. It’s much more accessible and quicker to take notes on a laptop or tablet than on paper. And students can search very quickly on the internet for unknown definitions or terms. Of course, students’ activity on laptops will be always monitored by teachers, so they won’t get distracted by other activities. Surprisingly, social media could have a good influence on learners, if used correctly, of course! Facebook, WhatsApp, Messenger, Viber, and even Twitter can contribute to effective learning. We all know they are a great and useful communication tool. Students can create group chats where they can talk about homework, lessons; send reminders, class updates and every piece of helpful information. They can also exchange photos, videos, and audio messages. The greatest perk of using these apps is the fact that learners check them more often than emails. And teachers can engage in conversations, too. They can give advice, come up with solutions, send homework and even announce events. Sounds awesome, right? Such a great time to be a teacher! And a student!
But still, if you’re an old-fashioned teacher and consider that you should communicate with your students only via email, what about writing your emails in a more engaging way? Take advantage as much as you can of this amazing digital tool! If you’re introducing gifs in your emails, students will consider you as a cool teacher and will answer more quickly. And truth be told, in this sense, you’ll also break this strong barrier between students and teachers, and their communication will definitely become better!
Since our students grow up in an environment full of technology, it’s really important to introduce digital tools in our schools. Technology gives students the ability to express themselves better and to solve various types of tasks. But more importantly, classroom digital tools represent an interactive and extraordinary opportunity for students, when used responsibly, of course. They would be motivated to learn more. And let’s admit it, what kind of teacher doesn’t want students that are excited and engaged to study more?