A report conducted by the IT Opportunities in Education Market showed that teachers in elementary schools noticed their students’ learning process is significantly richer today, because they integrated technology-based projects in their curriculum. Technology is an important element in grade school curriculum since it helps create a learning environment in which students are more confident and productive as they engage in projects that empower them to take ownership of their education.
In today’s elementary classroom, technology aids expression. Students learn to make visual presentations, design websites for science projects and write book reviews as bloggers. Daily computer use is essential as it helps young learners understand various software tools. Although the software will change before they enter high school, they will have a basic understanding of how various classes of computer tools work.
Technology is an information vehicle that challenges elementary students intellectually by giving them immediate access to information online, such as video of Martin L. King’s “I Have A Dream” speech and documents that can be downloaded from the Library of Congress. Technology helps enhance students’ worldview as young learners can communicate with students around world through webcams. Technology gives new meaning to research and helps students gain worldly perspectives that are not always captured in textbooks.
Technology can help grade school students cultivate skills that they can carry with them through college and as adults in the working world. Research on the Internet fosters students’ analysis and problem-solving skills as they work individually and in teams to gather information and come to conclusions. Computer programming class can help develop critical thinking skills as students learn how to place tasks into a logical sequence and technical skills are developed through students' using various software tools.
Mixing technology in the classroom supports learning and builds students’ confidence. When students are taught through slide shows or by showing films, the lessons are stimulating; when they access new information online, they feel motivated; and when they learn new software tools, they are empowered. Incorporating technology in the curriculum gives students a sense of purpose and their attitude toward their education becomes positive.
Martine Thomas-Fox discovered a love for teaching while volunteering. For more than 15 years, she has been a writer and teacher. She has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and a Master of Education degree. Currently, she directs an adult education center in Boston.