Technology has ingrained itself in today’s society so much so that functioning without it sometimes seems impossible. This lesson outlines ideas on using technological resources in a language arts classroom.
Technology in the Classroom
In today’s world, every teacher needs to use technology in the classroom. Technology in an educational aspect can be defined as any electronic equipment used to support or foster learning.
Students are exposed to all sorts of technology in their everyday lives, so using technology in the classroom can be a way to reach out to many students. Let’s look at some uses of technology for a middle school language arts class.
Any available technological equipment can be useful support to the learning process. Some schools are able to have computers in each classroom, or even laptops for each student. If this is the case, then use this equipment as much as possible. In language arts, students can use these to research, create videos, write papers, and much more.
Most middle school students are just beginning to develop their research skills and learning how to use evidence in papers and essays. Using computers can provide the opportunity to teach students how to identify reliable websites and relevant information.Tablets are another useful piece of technology in a classroom.
They can provide Internet access and can be used like laptops. Students can also download different educational mobile apps. These apps can be used as learning support for students with Individualized Education Programs, or IEPs, or even just with students who struggle with a certain topic. Tablets can promote active learning, which centers on students taking responsibility for their own learning, along with reaching students with different learning styles and skills.There are also other pieces of equipment that can be used for different activities within a language arts classroom.
For example, imagine you are teaching Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. At the end of the unit, you want to do a review game to help students prepare for the exam. You can use clickers, or a classroom response system, to have your students choose answers via buttons on the device. Each student, or group, gets a clicker, and you pose multiple-choice questions about the play to the class.
In a specified amount of time, students click buttons on their clicker that correspond to the correct answer. Then, the response system shows how many students got it right or wrong.Lastly, Smart Boards, which are interactive white boards, have become much more common in classrooms.
Students love being able to use the touch screen, and most come with pre-programmed games, videos, and other interactive activities. In language arts, you can use the default spinner to choose random writing topics or enter vocabulary words with their definitions and have students complete a matching game. There are many other options available for Smart Boards.
A final type of technological resource in the classroom is software, or the programs on a computer. Students in middle school should have already been exposed to using word processors, like Microsoft Word, and other presentation programs for various projects.
These are essential skills in today’s world.Presentation programs, like PowerPoint, Prezi, and emaze, not only help students learn how to summarize and organize information, but they also can be visual aids for students who are illustrative learners. Allowing students to be creative fosters active learning and helps them take charge of their own education. In a language arts classroom, these programs can be used to create projects on authors, novels, historical events in literature, or even writing and grammar units.
To review, technology in the classroom is any electronic equipment used to support learning.
Teachers should try to use all the technological resources available to them. Any equipment, like computers, laptops, tablets, clickers, and Smart Boards, can be used in a variety of language arts related activities. Finally, use software programs like word processors, PowerPoint, Prezi, and emaze to promote creativity, active learning, and learning support.
All these resources have unlimited uses for a middle school language arts classroom.
After you’ve reviewed this lesson, you should be able to:
- Recall the advantages of using technology in the classroom
- Describe technological resources available for language arts classrooms and how these can be used
- Explain how software programs can support learning and identify types of software programs for classroom use