Naturally, our day to day lives evolve alongside the progression of technology. This extends itself to the classroom. However, schools should ensure that the technology they implement improve students??™ education or make the classroom run more efficiently, otherwise, technology becomes an unnecessary distraction.
Schools need to make sure that technology is actually beneficial in the classroom, not just there for entertainment value or as an illusion to make the classroom look more credible. Technology should not replace things such as hands-on experimenting or educational field trips. Although it might appear as so, technology is not a substitute for real world experience (Source F). The ability to interact with real things and observe them in real time is not the same as moving a mouse or looking at pixels.
Schools also need to take in to consideration the accessibility, price, and learning curve of the technology they want to implement. For example, schools in the United States have begun to replace conventional textbooks with laptops (Source A). Before replacing textbooks, schools need to make sure that each class textbook has an electronic counterpart, lest some subjects may not have electronic textbooks. Schools need to consider the price of electronic books as well. Some electronic textbooks cost as much or even more than their printed counterparts as publishers??™ compromises ??“ they do not want the textbook to become irrelevant, yet they do not want to lose high-end schools as customers Also, students and teachers will need to familiarize themselves with electronic textbooks, which can be awkward at first to navigate, whereas students and teachers are already familiar with conventional textbooks. For example, a task as familiar as turning to a specific page is not the same on an electronic book, which might require specific instructions to turn to an exact page. Students and teachers would need to be taught how to use the many functions of e-book readers: how to search, how to annotate, and how to type.
It might not even be a good idea to subject students to so much technology until the negative effects of computers can fully be assessed. Technology has been attributed to short attention spans in students, which might prove detrimental to the learning process (Source C). If schools rely too much on technology, students will also rely too much on technology. This can create problems when they are sent off into the real world, where they might be required to do things ???the old way???.
Although technology can be beneficial to students??™ educations, it should not be blindly applied wherever possible. Technology is just another tool that instructors can use to educate. And like any other tool, it can be used correctly, and incorrectly; technology should only be used in school when it significantly improves students??™ educational experience.
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