It has been a hot topic among teachers for many years – should mobile technology be used in the classroom? It used to be a rule that mobile phones must be switched off to avoid distractions, however increasingly mobile technology is being embraced by schools as part of the learning process. To an extent the student is in charge of their own learning, gathering information from many different sources, not just traditional teaching methods. And there are many ways teaching professionals are now using mobile technology to inspire learners:
Explaining difficult concepts
Certain complex topics can be explained much more easily via mobile technology. Allowing students time to use their mobile phone for coursework or exam preparations, can give them the space to delve in to difficult concepts and discover a variety of opinions online, helping them to break down and make sense of the information.
Learning anytime, anywhere
The use of mobile technology can extend learning outside of the classroom. Students may see work on mobile technology as much less intrusive than a written piece of homework! Logging in to an app to complete a test, or read up on a given topic can make learning feel less of a chore and more a way of life.
Fact finding and research
Sending learners out on a field trip can be much more engaging and interactive with the use of mobile technology. Learners can use devices to take pictures and videos of what they discover on their trip, that they can revisit and share with others back in the classroom. Even simple fact finding missions can inspire learning, through investigation.
Bringing a topic to life
Topics can be brought to life through mobile technology, even the dullest topics that might otherwise not inspire learners! First hand accounts of key events in history, footage of a time long forgotten or music from around the world can all help learners engage and explore for themselves, perhaps even discovering interests they may never have encountered before.
Preparing for the future
Mobile technology is a way of life for students, and using it will be an essential part of their career. Encouraging students to use mobile technology can also inspire them to consider technology as a career choice.
Teachers are also increasingly using mobile technology to assess ability levels of students. Simple tests can determine how effectively a student has grasped a topic, or whether they require further tuition. Students often feel less pressure than with a traditional paper test, so testing can be more effective.
Engaging passive learners
Mobile technology can also be used to inspire passive learners who struggle with traditional teaching methods. It can be used as a way of encouraging the learner to open up about their own hobbies and interests through coursework and fact finding missions. For those that struggle with literacy, using mobile technology can put them on a level playing field with other learners.
However all this relies on having the right technology and applications within the school environment. Ensuring that the learning environment is engaging and that the user experience is logical is essential to ensure that learners are inspired. E-safety is also of paramount importance, so the information being accessed within the classroom is appropriate.
Inspiring learners is what all schools and teaching professionals strive to do, so it’s really no longer a case of whether mobile technology should be used in the classroom, but more a case of how it should be used. For advice and information about your mobile learning strategy, contact Titus Learning.