Blended Learning: Why Technology is Important in the Classroom
The term “blended learning” refers to the idea that classrooms are beginning to integrate computers in how they teach children. We have used computers at home and at work for a long time. We are seeing computer technology being used in the classroom more and more. Here are some examples for where you will find technology in the classroom:
- Using iPads and App programs
- Tests given using computers
- Lessons given using Powerpoint
- Reading Programs that track progress
Is Blended Learning Effective?
Is blended learning really changing anything? Teachers do report that blended learning is beneficial. Using computers in the class room help teachers to use their time more efficiently. Students are more likely to remain attentive. Since children use computers at home they report that the children enjoy using them in the classroom. This means that lessons are often easier when teachers use technology, or at the very least, students are more willing to cooperate and interact with the lesson.
Challenges of Blended Learning
Integrating technology in to the classroom does not come without a few draw backs. Here are a handful of challenges that teachers have when it comes to using blended learning:
- Helping students who have not been taught how to use computers
- Making sure children resist the urge to just play around
- Making sure lessons are interactive.
- Deciding which lessons are best taught traditionally
Importance of Blended Learning
Even though there are a handful of hurdles for teachers when it comes to blended learning, it is extremely important that technology is included in the classroom. Every state uses standardized testing for many different reasons. States are beginning to use computers to make standardized testing easier to implement. Therefore, it is important that students can easily navigate a computer.
Preparing For The Future
Not only are computers important for classroom use, they are also important once students graduate high school. Here are a few examples of how blended learning helps students once they join the work force:
- Computer skills are necessary for job searching
- Skills like typing, email and browser navigation are desirable
- Students should be able to assemble a resume to apply for jobs
- Computers are necessary to be successful in college
Clearly, the argument for blended learning is strong. The use of computers and the internet are necessary outside of the classroom, so it makes sense to bring those elements into the classroom. Many times teachers can feel as though they are sacrificing traditional teaching methods when they integrate blended learning, and some are hesitant. There are many teachers who have utilized programs which children can then access at home. By using individual student log in information, they can practice different lessons at home to further their learning and understanding of the subject matter. This helps teachers and families both feel comfortable with how technology is being used in the classroom.