With a new invention coming out every week, it’s no wonder that our education would be affected. One thing is certain about learning in the 21st Century, technology and education are inseparable. In the age of smart phones, smart televisions, and even smart homes, schools must be ‘smart’ as well. Take a look at some ways that we, as students, and schools are keeping up with the digital age.
Power in Numbers – Connected Educators
Teachers in schools today have unprecedented access to just-in-time professional resources and development that can help them immensely. By utilizing tools such as Google, Youtube, and Pinterest, teachers all over the world can learn new ideas to implement in their classrooms. By connecting with social networks such as Facebook, Edmodo, and Twitter, educators can immediately share ideas, learn new things, and interact with experts in particular topics. Educators can utilized these resources to enrich their own teaching and build connected, interactive learning experiences for their students.
New educational resources are posted online hourly and teachers need only look to find exciting new ways to deliver content to their students. For example, the online assessment tool Kahoot! had a massive 300,000 user-created quizzes at the beginning of this school year. In just eight months that number has increased to 2.1 million user-created assessments. All of these quizzes are available for free to any teacher who is willing to branch out and use technology to improve instruction. This illustrates the power in numbers the internet and technology provides for teachers today.
Living in a Connected World
Students today are connected in every aspect of their lives. They wake up to alarms on their phones. Before getting dressed many have interacted with friends via social networks. On the way to school they are still communicating with others while traveling in a vehicle that is connected to multiple satellites sending and receiving information. After school the connectedness continues including interactive online games that are extremely popular. Schools cannot ignore the changing landscape of the digital world today. With this in mind you can see why online courses, like this master degree in electrical engineering, are increasing in popularity. More and more universities are recognizing this avenue as a valid option for many of their students.
Collaboration and Creation – Connected Students
Students today have access to an unprecedented amount of collaboration and creation tools using technology. Google Docs allows any student with an account to write, present, and share the creative process collaboratively in real-time with other students anywhere on the planet. In many classrooms app design, 3D printing, and video creation are transforming how students display their learning. These online and interactive creations allow for a global audience that goes far beyond the classroom teacher or school.
Students and teachers in the 21st century live connected lives and schools cannot be a digital desert. Education today must include technology usage at a high level. Teachers and students are becoming digital natives and schools must be an environment that allows teachers and students to flourish.