Technology is changing in the classroom. Classroom boards have changed from being black to smart! Using tablet computers and iPads are increasingly being used at school to support young learners, changing how children share their learning and communicate with the world. This video is a great demonstration on how tablet computers and technologies are being used in early stage classrooms to enhance student learning. Through using new technologies children experience a change in their learning and creative processes. The tablet computer is a device that is lightweight and easy for children to handle, giving them greater autonomy over their learning. The intuitive nature of the object, its size and mobility encourage ‘learning by doing’ and make documentation and reflective practices more accessible. Ideas and explanations are easily viewed and shared with others and the learning process becomes both interactive and constructive as suggested by Cobb, Wood and Yackel (1990) (as cited by Bobis, Mulligan & Lowrie).
As shown in the video, Mishra and Koehler (2006) believe technologies should be explored in relation to subject matter rather than teaching technology skills in isolation. They argue that technology has recontextualized pedagogy and content knowledge. “Teachers will have to do more than simply learn to use currently available tools; they also will have to learn new techniques and skills as current technologies become obsolete.”
In a changing world and changing classroom, technology is becoming more and more a part of many children’s lives. Technology can be used as a discussion point, as a change in their lives, both in the past and present. Students can explore change by using an iPod or digital camera as part of a construction/deconstruction/reconstruction process, or simply to document how a work grows and changes. Discussion should take place where students explain steps and reasoning involved in their process. They should be encouraged to look back on this documentation at a later date and reflect on the concept change in relation to both learning and themselves. The video shares a great idea about manipulating the moon using an iPad app, making it into a three-dimensional model and then taking a photo and manipulating the photo in a drawing app, “thus really moving into new things in new ways”. Such a project exemplifies change as learning. Using technology in the classroom opens pathways to global networks and classroom exchanges. Classes are increasing sharing and learning via an online presence. Check out this link for more on technology and collaboration in the classroom. http://theglobalclassroomproject.wordpress.com/mentors/
Bobis, J., Mulligan, J., & Lowrie, T. (2013). Mathematics for Children: Challenging children to think mathematically (4th Ed.). Pearson Education: Sydney.
Mishra, P. & Koehler, M. (2006) Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge: A Framework for Teacher Knowledge. Teachers College Record, 08 (6) pp.1017-1054