Finding the Balance in Learning With Digital Devices

One of the biggest challenges when it comes to teaching with digital devices is finding the right balance between traditional and modern methods of learning. For the best results, educators should try to balance electronic time with time in the classroom spent reading, writing, and playing board games. The AAP also recommends balancing the time students spend in the classroom with offline materials, including newspapers, books, and face-to-face time with other students.

The use of electronic devices in the classroom is not without its benefits. For example, instant video access and the use of new digital equipment can enhance learning. For example, students can view the “I Have a Dream” speech by Martin Luther King or the first steps on the moon. In addition, the ability to see bridges being built or presidential speeches being delivered makes history more real for students.

To maximize the benefits of digital devices for learning, school systems should carefully select the best device for students. The choice should involve multiple stakeholders and the school’s needs and goals. The system should consider how it will use the devices in the classroom, its content needs, and its role outside of the classroom. Also, it must consider the device’s functionality and overall cost of ownership.

The use of educational technologies should support critical thinking, problem-solving, and interactivity. For instance, educational games, videos, photographing and websites can help students engage in problem solving, creativity, and collaboration. In addition, interactive digital activities can help students develop higher-order thinking skills and deeper content exploration.

Ultimately, a healthy balance between digital devices and traditional teaching is essential. It is important to remember that the majority of today’s students have never known a world without high-speed internet, which they use as a means to communicate, socialize, and obtain formal education. Therefore, teachers should approach this technology as an aid to teaching and not as a substitute for it.

Too much screen time can have negative effects on students’ development, health, and long-term success. To help teachers balance their digital devices and classroom activities, the Common Sense Media organization offers curriculum resources and professional development resources for educators. Teachers should also take time to plan and collaborate with students. Common Sense Media resources emphasize critical thinking, digital citizenship, and student safety.

Teachers should set limits on the time students can spend with digital devices. For example, they can limit access to certain websites on their network. This is crucial for monitoring student use, as students might access inappropriate links on their devices. Furthermore, students may also use their devices for social networking, which could distract them from learning.

Teachers should also set clear boundaries in their classrooms regarding the use of digital devices. Educators should create protocols to control the use of digital devices, which would ensure that technology complements current teaching methodologies without making teachers feel like they don’t have any talent. If teachers take calculated risks, their schools will not spiral out of control. There are thousands of edtech products available, but not all of them will work in every classroom. Ultimately, teachers should choose what works best for them and their students.