Technology should not supplant what you usually teach. It should become a tool -- just like a calculator, a pen, or a chalkboard -- that helps you teach and helps your students learn. It's that simple. The first step in determining how to integrate technology into your curriculum is to take a quick assessment of where you are in terms of technology. I've developed this four-point "STAR" approach to technology assessment:. Take a moment to pencil or type!
The better you understand the lay of the land, the better you'll know what you need to do to jump-start technology use in your class. Don't let any negative or weak areas depress you. Make an honest evaluation of what you have to work with. Even if you are a beginner with a single computer in your classroom, few training opportunities, and students with no home computers, you can integrate technology into your classroom. Next, consider what you want to accomplish. If your school or district has established expectations for technology use in your classroom, write them down.
If you have personal goals "I want to use spreadsheets in my middle school science class, for example" , write those down as well. No matter what you know -- or don't know -- about technology, no matter how many computers you have, no matter how skilled your students are, you can integrate technology. Remain confident, flexible, and enthusiastic and you will succeed.
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Worksheets: Download without a subscription. Leave this field blank. Search Search. Newsletter Sign Up. Search form Search. Guide to Easily IntegrateTechnology into Teaching Are you feeling pressured to integrate technology into your K curriculum? I've developed this four-point "STAR" approach to technology assessment: Student skills and attitudes: What can students already do with computers and what's their attitude toward technology? Do students have computers and Internet access at home? Teacher skills and attitudes: What can you do on a computer and how do you feel about using computers in the classroom?
Access: How much computer time can you and your students get each week? Do you have classroom computers or lab access only? How much lab time is available? How many computers?
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Resources: What kinds of hardware, software, and training are available? Are computers reliable? Is the available software education software such as math drills or productivity software such as a word processing program? What types of training free or paid are available through your school or community? Now, take some time to get ready and get motivated. Get wired: Make sure you have Internet access and a reliable computer at home.
20 Technology Skills Every Educator Should Have -- THE Journal
Both are fairly cheap if you choose low-end service and an older computer. Get inspired: Find peers who already integrate technology, and learn from them. Try to observe a class -- seeing it done right will help motivate you! Get informed: Visit a professional organization's Web site regularly. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics , International Reading Association , National Education Association , and others all provide excellent and constantly updated online resources for teachers.
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The new technologies for education a beginners will give sent to down community choice. Personal computers are simply not affordable for everyone, especially low-income families. Without a computer at home to practice on, an individual must rely on schools and libraries and may end up with less developed skills as a consequence.
Tradesmen who work with their hands are also more likely to struggle using a computer given they will have averaged less time in front of a screen than someone who works in an office. In certain cases adults with undiagnosed language based learning difficulties may avoid computers because of low confidence when it comes to reading and spelling skills.
If a family member or friend needs help using a computer you may consider providing some instruction yourself. Just remember that it can sometimes be a challenge, especially if you grew up using computers and have forgotten what it was like to be a total beginner. Find out how much they know. Have they ever had to use a computer? Have they seen other people using them? Do they have their own device or have access to a shared computer on which to learn?
Are they thinking of getting one? Ask them about their goals. It could be a learner would like to get on Facebook to connect with old friends, or they may want to run Skype calls to talk to grandkids. In some cases computer skills are just the first step in opening up access to home education software that can be used to improve language and literacy skills or enrolling in a distance education program.
Talk through the hardware. While children are naturally inclined to learn through experimentation, adults may want things explained before they are comfortable enough trying it for themselves. This will help make the machine itself less intimidating.
Computer basics for adults
Introduce new vocabulary terms. They are part of everyday language but have entirely different meanings in a computer driven context. Encourage adult learners to keep a journal in which they write down any words they are uncertain about and remember to think twice about the language you use when you provide definitions. If possible avoid definitions that contain additional jargon. Ensure a safe workstation. In some cases you may want to explore specialized keyboards, for example for individuals with large hands, motor-skills difficulties, or visual impairment.
Learn more in our posts on how to avoid wrist injury when typing and the best alternative keyboards. Adjust the display and audio settings. If hearing impairment is an issue, adjust speakers or headphone settings. Tip: Some fonts are better than others for individuals who struggle with a language based learning difficulty like dyslexia. Encourage practice with the mouse or touchpad. Have the person practice using the mouse or touchpad, selecting various objects on the desktop and dragging and dropping.
Be there to support them as they explore different clicks. You might explain left and right clicking, scrolling, zooming in and out, etc. Go over the keyboard. Show them a few commands and important keys, such as the delete key, using shift for capital letters, and control shortcuts for copy and paste. Teach them how to use a word processor. This includes opening up a new document, typing some text and saving it.
Have them take a closer look at the blinking cursor and practice moving it to different places. Copy and paste words, change the font and font size, and add in some formatting such as bold, underline and italics.