Incorporating educational technology into classroom instruction, or even at home, is proving beneficial for many of those in the education field. In this ever-evolving world of technology, it is crucial for students to continue to grow in their academics and boost knowledge in a variety of school subjects.
Allowing students to engage in academics through fun learning activities increases the desire to learn. It is important for educators and students to adapt to new means of learning and utilize the many technological resources available today, as they can play a major role in elevating study skills and overall performance.
There is a comprehensive selection of educational technology resources available to educators and students to strengthen classroom instruction, such as video portals, success tracking systems, interactive websites, multimedia devices, educational video games and more.
Companies developing these online resources generally make them user friendly and allow for seamless integration into the classroom. As our youth continue to be referred to as “digital natives,” why not capitalize on the generations’ interest in technology and make classroom learning more exciting and interactive?
Nearly 51 of the 53 million K-12 students in the United States play video games, which is why many researchers argue that schools should take advantage of incorporating video games in the classrooms – educational ones of course.
Many kids have grown up playing video games in their spare time, and most games, whether on Wii, Xbox or the computer, are essentially problem-solving games. A significant portion of education boils down to problem-solving skills, in turn creating a natural fit for these educational video games in the classroom and presenting a new avenue for learning.
Online educational and gaming resources are exceedingly essential considering technology is what our world is constantly gravitating towards. Children are more and more proficient in the use of cell phones, computers and gaming devices, thus creating fluency in using technology.
Educational video games offer learning tactics and skills that are necessary to become successful in all business sectors. Kids that are now in K-12 schooling are going to help create and be part of our future, which is why it is vital for them to be well-prepared.
Most educational video games are developed with the intention to re-create the persistence and involvement as observed in video game players, in hopes of bringing that same intensity into the classroom setting.
These games allow technology-driven students to develop new ways of learning, actively participate in assigned lessons and garner a sense of excitement. Video games offer students an enjoyable way of mastering subject skills versus the monotonous basic practice tactics and busy work.
Exciting developments in this field are the games that allow for multi-player game play and promote positive interaction and achievement amongst students. Teachers are realizing the sheer power when incorporating these video games into classroom instruction and curriculum.
Upon implementation, many educators are witnessing heightened student engagement, knowledge retention, and subject mastery. In addition, teachers are seeing improved student performance grades, specifically in timed tests which usually consist of drill-and-practice approaches.
Getting students motivated and ready to learn is half the battle when it comes to teaching, thus educators are able to use these materials in a way that leads to positive student reactions and outcomes.
When gauging their convenience in the classroom, educational video games undoubtedly make it easy for educators to align use with their individual teaching styles due to their short, flexible nature. For example, teachers can assign game play for review after a lecture or as a homework assignment instead of a hard-copy worksheet.
Game developers understand it is important to create games that do not interfere with teachers’ curriculum, strategy or teaching style. Rather, the well-developed, noteworthy games effortlessly support schedules and lesson plans. Ideally, these games only require the use of a projector screen, interactive white board or computer lab.
Utilizing video games in all school subjects will lead to greater success. Presently, educational video games focus on basic subjects that can be easily scored by a computer: math, language arts and vocabulary.
However, there is significant research underway to determine and develop new games that engage thinking skills, the scientific process, foreign languages, critical thought and more. Students are expected to know and process a vast amount of knowledge in today’s learning environment, so it is vital that they remain engaged and interested in education.
With schools being asked both to enhance curriculum effectiveness and shrink their operating budgets, one is left to wonder what teachers can do to improve. One enormous benefit provided by the better educational video games on the market is their offering of score tracking and data management features.
These services allow teachers to see and measure data and results on a day-to-day basis, then address good findings or problem areas as they are happening, rather than having to manually tabulate and analyze worksheet results or wait for results from a yearly, high-stakes assessment test.
Utilizing educational technology initiatives continues to transform classrooms into twenty-first century learning environments. Educators that use new technology in the classroom are able to address learning needs and create a connected learning network with students. Drawing on a twenty-first century approach to learning offers students a chance to challenge themselves and become more well-rounded individuals who will have so much to offer the future. Students appreciate the new approaches to learning and in return, increase time on task and motivation.
Dr. Jerry Chaffin, founder of Arcademic Skill Builders, has spent over 40 years as a classroom teacher, teacher educator and pioneer in the development and implementation of technology in the classroom. He has actively engaged in school reform efforts for most of his professional career, especially those involving the integration of technology into the curriculum. Chaffin has also authored numerous articles and books in the field of education and special education. For more information on Dr. Chaffin and Arcademic Skill Builders, please visit www.arcademicskillbuilders.com .