The classroom can be a daunting place to work in, especially for new teachers. There are many things that need to be considered when designing your classroom space and deciding what you want it to look like. One of the most important considerations is technology. Technology has become an integral part of everyday life, so why not incorporate it into your teaching? This blog post will offer 12 tips on how you can use technology in the classroom as a new teacher!
1. Start with the Basics
Teachers should always start simple when it comes to technology. The best way to do this is by starting off with an interactive whiteboard (IWB) or a projector, like those used in lecture halls or conference rooms. Both types of devices allow you to project images onto your board and then write using different tools that are delivered through software programs. This can be useful for introducing new material, practicing skills students have learned previously, doing guided practice during lessons, and creating digital assessments!
2. Teach How to Use Technology
Once you’ve begun using technology with your students, it’s important that they know how to use the tools. If not, then there might be a learning curve for them if they need help down the road. One way I like to do this is by having my students complete activities on Smart Board or Promethian boards (which are very similar). Then, after students become familiar with the equipment and what to expect when working on these board, we begin doing mini-lessons where I model proper behavior.
You can also teach how to use specific software programs properly before beginning lessons in which you will utilize those same programs! This could include showing an instructional video about creating digital presentations online or teaching different functions within an online platform like Edmodo.
This is also true for using apps on tablets or phones that students will be actively engaged in during class time! For example, when I taught the state standards surrounding ratios and proportions this past year, then we used an app called Ratio Trainer which allowed my students to practice finding equivalent fractions with different denominators. It was a great way to get them excited about practicing math skills without even realizing they were doing so!
Making sure your students can use technology effectively is extremely important if you want it to truly enhance their learning experience inside of the classroom. If they are not comfortable using these tools independently by themselves, then there’s no point in incorporating them into lessons because only you will benefit from that knowledge.
3. Be Mindful of Internet Safety
When it comes to technology and the classroom, you should always keep internet safety in mind. Before introducing students to new web sites or apps, make sure they are appropriate for school use! There is a lot that can be done on the internet; however, many times those activities might not align with learning standards or your teaching philosophy as an educator.
For example, there are several games online that allow users to practice math skills like addition and subtraction (like MagiMath). However, there have been reports from parents stating their children were playing these types of games instead of doing their homework because they enjoyed them so much! So if this happens at your school where teachers do not want kids completing work independently through games, then it is best to avoid using these apps with students.
You should also be mindful of how much time students are spending on the internet when you use technology in your classroom after school hours. If they can access YouTube or other online games through their phone without any issues at home, then this could cause problems when trying to get them focused during class time! It is for this reason that I only allow my students to utilize devices like tablets and laptops (which have limited access) during lessons because it eliminates temptation for kids who may struggle controlling themselves around screen-based activities.
4. Use Technology in Small Group Instruction
This is something I began doing about halfway through my first year teaching. During this time, students were already using technology during lessons each day which allowed me to see what worked and what didn’t when it came to incorporating these tools into class activities.
I noticed that the majority of kids really enjoyed working on iPad apps or websites because they could be engaged with their peers while also learning new content! So instead of having them complete all group work independently for math problems, then why not have some collaborative activities where they can still use technology? This would allow you as an educator more opportunities for differentiation within your classroom since every student was engaging with similar tasks but at different levels based on skill level.
5. Use Technology During Differentiation
Using technology in the classroom is an excellent way to differentiate instruction depending on your students’ current abilities! This is because platforms like Edmodo allow educators to quickly move through content with kids who are more advanced while still giving struggling learners extra time and practice mastering concepts they struggle with.
6. Teach Students How to Collaborate
Incorporating technology into the classroom is a great way for students to collaborate with one another as they work on different tasks. However, if you want them working productively with their peers, you need to make sure they know how this process works before getting started!
7. Teach Students How to Take Notes
Taking notes is a vital skill for students and one that they need to be doing more often when learning content. Unfortunately, it seems like this concept has sort of fallen by the wayside in our society today because kids don’t realize how much time will actually go into their note-taking process! So if you want your students coming back every day ready to learn new things (and not dreading group work or tests), then you should make sure they know exactly what good note-taking looks like before diving into lessons.
8. Use Technology to Assess Student Learning
Technology can be used for more than just data collection and note-taking (although these are certainly important aspects of its use in the classroom). It is also a great way to assess student learning throughout your lessons! This gives you as an educator the opportunity to see who might need extra help, or better yet, which students may struggle with what content.
With all of the technology available to use in classrooms today, it can be hard for new teachers who are just getting started on their teaching journey. To help these educators get up and running quickly with some helpful tips, we compiled a list of 8 strategies you should consider when using tech in your classroom. We hope this helps! Do you have any other questions or concerns? Let us know below!