Technology is tempting to embed in the classroom en masse. It piques kids’ interests and it is fun to explore. But does it lead to achievement and help students grow as learners? We need to ask ourselves these types of questions if we want to realize the impact that connected education can have on students
When words are on a screen, we tend to not stick with content as long as we might when compared to paper.
Reasons include more distractions on a screen, such as multimedia enhancements and advertisements, and the “difficulty to see any one passage in the context of the entire text” (Jabr, 2013). These factors can lead to decreased comprehension and understanding.
dedicated e-readers with e-ink technology are equivalent to print, as far as the mind is concerned. “
So should reading on tablets and laptops be avoided in classrooms? Not if a digital reading experience offers options for learners who need more support.
social media isn’t just for the kids. Educators can leverage these connections to their advantage.
In a recent study, teenagers originally from Mexico living in the US saw improvement in acquiring English skills through interacting within Facebook communities (Stewart, 2014). These adolescents also felt more supported and connected when they were able to communicate with others using their native language.
Sherry Turkle, a scientist from MIT, found that empathy can be reduced by up to 40% in college students when they prioritize online relationships over in person conversations (Turkle, 2015).
What we allow at school needs to be balanced with an awareness of the often unrestricted access students have at home and the community.
Integrating digital devices into the classroom tends to accentuate current instruction but does not improve poor practice (Toyoma, 2015)
college students who do not use a digital device during class show better understanding of the content taught compared to students who did (Shirkey, 2014)
In fact, the mere presence of a laptop or tablet was distracting to those around the student using technology.
Keep it simple. If the digital devices lack a natural point for integration, don’t shoehorn it in for the sake of making instruction “connected.” Pedagogy trumps technology.