Technology in schools has changed so much through the years and with the emergence of new, groundbreaking gadgets that have altered how people can interact with both media and people all over the world, such as virtual reality and Cloud based computing, it is clear that education will have to evolve to include these new, innovative technologies.
Not too long ago, schools would only consist of a teacher standing in front of a whiteboard and perhaps the students might have had some time on computers to practice typing or using the internet safely.
Some schools brought in interactive whiteboards that could give students a more hands on approach to learning with games. The teachers could play with the entire class students would be able to write or draw directly onto a computer screen.
But more recently, not only have computers become more abundant in schools but iPads have been introduced which both allows children to get acquainted with the technology, providing them with an experience similar to that of an interactive whiteboard but more personalised, and also allows teachers to leave the children to work for themselves on tasks that are put on the Cloud prior to the lesson.
The introduction of Cloud based computing has also led to students being able to see the lessons planned for them ahead of time or even work from home on the tasks that have been set by their teachers.
There is a problem with the introduction of technology into classrooms as even though children are enthusiastic about working with something that injects some fun into lessons or that have some sort of novelty to them, it will make it harder for them to go into subjects that cannot integrate those same devices.
Giving a child an iPad or allowing them to use a computer definitely comes with the risk of distraction, especially when given access to the internet. However, steps can be taken to prevent this through software that can monitor what is on a student’s computer screen as long as they are on the same network as the teacher.
It is difficult to know whether technology has helped or hindered education in the long run and, while there are a lot of benefits, it does make it harder to monitor whether the students are actually doing their work, which is the most important aspect. However with technology on the horizon, such as virtual reality, this will allow for different methods of teaching for kinaesthetic learners and augmented reality that can make it easier to visualise things affecting the world around us, by safely allowing us to project their effects onto familiar surroundings. It is clear that for better or worse education is going to change dramatically.