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Staying Current with Technology in the Classroom

Janelle Cox

Technology in the classroom is moving at a rapid pace, and it’s not slowing down anytime soon. As it continues to grow, so does the need for teachers to keep up with it. We are living in a time period where children as young as 2 can navigate their way through an iPad or smartphone faster than we can. This means that in order to educate our youth, we will need to be one step ahead of them. However, with the constant changing of all of this new technology in the classroom, many teachers are finding it too hard to keep with them all. Teaches are asking themselves “Isn’t the point of technology in the classroom to make our jobs easier, not harder?”

Technology in the Classroom: Stay Current or Risk Losing Learners

Many educators, especially the veterans, fear that they don’t have the skills and training that is necessary to educate their students properly with technology. Some even think that ed-tech will somehow disrupt their teaching methods, or even go as far as replacing them in the classroom. While these fears are legitimate, teachers need to keep in mind that implementing ed-tech is about improving the learning experience for their students. It’s about using a different method to keep students interested in the subject matter, as well as keeping them motivated to learn. It’s also an opportunity to enhance students’ needs as well as their interests. You can either stay up-to-date with the latest in ed-tech, or you can risk losing learners.

How to Keep Up with Educational Innovations

Technology trends are constantly changing and evolving fast. If you are committed to learning how to use technology trends to enhance and improve your students’ classroom experience, then here are a few ways that you can keep up with the latest cutting-edge technology and educational innovations.

Utilize Social Media

Social media is an easy and effective way to learn about new technologies. Take advantage of social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook, where they make it easy for you to track what’s trending in the world of educational technology. All you have to do is search hashtags on both platforms like #edtech or #edchat to read all about the latest educational innovations. You can also chat with experienced techies and get all of your questions answered.

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Subscribe to an RSS Feed or Newsletter

Another good way to keep with the latest ed-tech trends is to subscribe to a websites’ RSS feed and/or its newsletter. Emerging Ed Tech is a great website that is devoted to providing readers with the latest news. Ed Tech Teacher is another great site that shares ideas that you can take into the classroom, as well as keeps you up to date with the latest technologies. Wired and ExtremeTech are two more sites that are worth looking in to.

Surround Yourself with Techies

Everyone knows someone who is a technological master of sorts. This is a person who can fix your computer in a pinch or knows everything there is to know about current technology. Cultivating friendships with people like this will help you learn and understand, as well as feel more comfortable around technology. If there’s a new device that you want to try out in your classroom, then all you have to do is ask you tech friend how it works, and if it’s worth looking into.

Ask Your Students

This generation of children has been born into a world where they live and breathe technology. They are the first ones to keep up with the latest in technology, so who better to ask then your students? If you are thinking about trying a new tech tool, ask your students first. Sometimes your students already have the knowledge about the tool, and can not only teach you how to use it, but your other students as well.

Pursue Professional Development Courses

If you’re looking to enhance your comfort level with technology tools, then you can become an expert by taking an online class. There are many affordable courses that can help you learn the tools that can enhance your students’ classroom experience. Also, by taking a few of these courses, you will be able to position yourself for a better opportunity within your job.

In short, you must do your homework in order to keep up with educational innovations. While it would be impossible to keep up with all the latest digital technologies, it is possible to try as many as you see fit for your classroom. By adopting this approach, you will be able to ensure that your students are 21st-century learners, and have a general understanding of the latest educational innovations.

What is your favorite way to stay current with technology in the classroom? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below, we would love to hear how you stay up to date.