In today’s world, technology is a huge part of our lives. From how we communicate to where we get our news and information, technology has impacted our society in countless ways. For kids, technology can play a large role throughout their academic journey as well! Here’s a few ways technology is impacting how children learn.
1) Access to information. One of the most significant changes in the last few decades has been how we obtain information. With the internet at our fingertips, a massive amount of knowledge is available at the press of a button. This can be especially impactful for school projects that require students to research a topic. In the past, students were expected to make a trip to the library, take notes and/or photocopy relevant pages, and condense this information for later use. Today, this whole process is a lot more streamlined! Although we always recommend visiting a library to browse physical reading material, the vast majority of popular novels, books, and academic texts are now available digitally. Printing your own resources at home is a huge convenience, so take advantage of this!
- Tutor Doctor Tip: Something to consider with digital information is credibility. Whereas published texts are more likely to be peer-reviewed and appropriate for academic use, this isn’t always the case for information found online. For these reasons, students are now taught how to identify credible sources when using web resources – for example, domains ending in “.org” or “.edu” are often considered preferable for educational applications.
2) Interactive learning. Technology can be an incredible tool to create interactive learning experiences for students. Computer-based assessments and lessons often provide students with immediate, real-time feedback on their responses, as well as helpful tips and instructions designed to aid the user experience. This can also be especially helpful for students with varying learning styles. As we’ve discussed in previous blogs, learning styles can essentially be broken down into three categories – visual, auditory, and tactile (kinetic) learning. With a wide variety of learning applications available, students of all learning styles can be sure to find instructional methods that fit their needs.
3) Instruction outside of a classroom. In the past, additional instruction would typically be done in two ways – either through an after-school program, or in-home and online with a private tutor. With the advent of technology, learning resources are much more widely available for students to use at home. From alternative home-schooling classes to online college courses, technology allows students to easily participate in remote learning. Whether used just for extra practice or for an entire subject or grade, technology-based learning can be an incredibly convenient tool – especially for students (and parents!) with busy schedules.
4) Correspondence with teachers. One of the biggest benefits of technology in education is how easy it has become to contact your child’s teachers. Rather than scheduling a phone call, emails are often preferred for their convenience. Not only this, but nearly all schools now have homepages with tons of great information, ranging from class schedules to yearly curriculum standards. Teachers themselves often upload important class information and school events to their own websites as well. Having easy, digital access to a syllabus and important assignments can be a real lifesaver – especially for students working on improving their organizational skills.
- Tutor Doctor Tip: Many schools now have online portals where students can check their current grades. In the past, a teacher conference or mid-semester progress report would often be the only way to get these periodic updates. Today, many students can check their grades for individual assignments, as well as their overall score in the class throughout the school year. This can be a valuable tool when trying to identify areas that may need improvement!