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Running head: Essay Exam 1

Essay Exam

Sarah Miller

Oakland University
Essay Exam 2

Essay Exam: Part One

The advancement of technology, has caused numerous changes of roles of both, teachers

and students. According to Zoe Bernard, technology is “shaking up the role of educators,

creating philosophical shifts in approaches to teaching, and remodeling the classroom” (Bernard,

2017). Although this may be intimidating, as future educators we must be able to recognize how

technology can benefit our classrooms. In the article, How Has Technology Changed Education?

they talk about what a traditional classroom once looked like, “the teacher is the primary source

of information, and the learners passively receive it” (Purdue, 2018). This portrayal of what this

classroom may look like is something in which I can relate to. I feel as though I was in school at

a weird time when technology was becoming more and more prevalent. In the very beginning of

my educational career, technology was never incorporated into my learning, like the quote.

However, as I got older, my teachers slowly started to incorporate more technology into our

classroom. By looking at this simple example, you can recognize the shift teachers have had to

undergo; information is no longer only found in a book or what a teacher tells their students—a

teacher is now seen as someone who facilitates learning, using technology. In addition to this, by

incorporating technology into the classroom, teachers are better able to individualize learning.

We have recognized that not every person learns in the same way.

In addition to the changing roles teachers have gone through due to advancements in

educational technology, students are also affected. Technology allows students to have autonomy

in their own learning. Students become active learners who “have a thirst for discovery and

knowledge”. By creating active learners, you teach students how to take safe risks, create

solutions to problems, be creative, and work both collaboratively and independently (Britland,

2013). Even more, by incorporating technology into our classrooms, we also nurture student’s
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intrinsic motivation. Kelly Warmuth, author of Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation in the

Classroom, defines intrinsic motivation as: “an inherent interest in pursuing a topic (“learning for

learning’s sake”)…they naturally desire to learn mastery of it” (Warmuth, 2014). This quote

supports the claim that children are naturally curious. As a future educator, I hope that we can

harvest student’s curiosity, and allow them to explore and investigate in topics in which they are

inherently interested in. Overall, the advancement of technology, has caused numerous changes

of roles of both, teachers and students.

There are numerous advantages and disadvantages of using technology in our classrooms.

As talked about in my previous sections, by incorporating technology in the classroom, teachers

are better able to individualize lessons to different students. As all of us have seen, not all

students learn in the same way. This idea that not all students learn in the same way was further

explained by psychologist, Howard Gardner. He proposed that there are nine different learners,

each with their own set of characteristics in which they learn best. Gardner stated “educators

should not follow one specific theory or educational innovation when designing instruction but

instead employ customized goals and values appropriate to their teaching and student needs”

(Northern Illinois University, n.d.). By incorporating technology into the classroom, you can

better individualize lesson plans for different learners.

Additionally, with the use of technology, students have instant access to knowledge.

Rather than being confined to only what you can find in your textbook, the internet allows you to

find answers at any time. In one of my placement classrooms, the teacher had an Alexa on her

desk. The class would be doing a read aloud or an activity for social studies, and if a student

were to ask a question my placement teacher couldn’t answer, they would ask Alexa! The

students loved asking questions and then to hear Alexa respond—this is just another way
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technology can be incorporated into the classroom. Technology has been proven to “keep

students focused longer and makes them more excited to learn more” (Mata, 2015). You can see,

just by integrating technology into the classroom in such a small way, my placement teacher

shaped an engaged learning environment.

Lastly, I think one of the biggest benefits to incorporating technology into the classroom

is the idea of collaboration. According to Walden University, teachers have noticed that when

incorporating technology, there is a greater sense of collaboration between students within the

classroom (Walden University, 2018). By integrating technology into the classroom, students can

work together to find solutions to problems. Students who may not share ideas out loud or are

too shy, may finally be able to find their voice and collaborate with other classmates, behind a

screen. In my current placement, students are allowed to go on the computer to do both math and

reading games when they are finished with their work. Although the work is highly

individualized based on their own abilities, students are always working together to solve

problems they don’t understand.

Although there are numerous advantages to incorporating technology into the classroom,

there are disadvantages, too. One of the biggest issues facing technology in classrooms is the fear

of students disconnecting from the “real” world. It’s this idea that children become so involved

in their phones, that they lack the basic communication skills they need to form relationships

with others. “People are attached to their screens almost 24/7, which is causing an entirely new

set of social issues to pop up” (Future of Working, n.d.) I know that children can connect with

people behind a screen, but it is not the same as in-person communication. This idea also heavily

relates to the idea of cyber-bullying. When you’re behind the screen you don’t have to deal with

real emotions, in real time. Growing up, I was always told: back in the day children would be
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bullied at school but they could go home and it would stop; but now, bullying may happen at

school and when they go home they’re bullied online. Some would say that they don’t have a

way to escape it—and that scares me.

Another disadvantage to technology is the idea of the ability to read and see inappropriate

content. In a day and age where anyone can post anything, it can be worrisome that our students

would accidently see something inappropriate. As future educators, I think it is most important to

monitor what your students are viewing. You can do this by simply walking around the room or

provide resources in which they can look for information. Additionally, the idea of cheating or

plagiarism comes up when talking about technology in the classroom. In our forum discussions

we have talked a lot about this—the biggest thing we can do as future educators is educate our

students and model expectations.

In conclusion, the advancement of technology, has caused numerous changes of roles of

both, teachers and students. It is with these changes, that we have seen the advantages and

disadvantages of incorporating technology into the classroom. Society continues to change, and

as future educators we need to change, too. It is our job to incorporate technology into our future

classrooms and prepare our students for their future!

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References:

Bernard, Zoë (2017, December 27). Here's how technology is shaping the future of education.

Business Insider. Retrieved from https://www.businessinsider.com/how-technology-is-

shaping-the-future-of-education-2017-12

Britland, Mike (2013, June 18). How has technology transformed the role of a teacher? The

Guardian. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/teacher-network/teacher-

blog/2013/jun/18/technology-transform-teaching-students-schools

Future of Working (n.d.). 10 advantages and disadvantages of technology in education. Future of

Working. Retrieved from https://futureofworking.com/10-advantages-and-disadvantages-

of-technology-in-education/

Mata, Willie (2015, March 25). The importance of technology in the classroom. Centre

Technologies. Retrieved from https://centretechnologies.com/importance-of-technology-

in-the-classroom/

Northern Illinois University (n.d.). Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences. Northern

Illinois University. Retrieved from

https://www.niu.edu/facdev/_pdf/guide/learning/howard_gardner_theory_multiple_intelli

gences.pdf

Purdue University (2018). How has technology changed education? Purdue University.

Retrieved from https://online.purdue.edu/ldt/learning-design-technology/resources/how-

has-technology-changed-education

Walden University (2018, July 06). Top 5 benefits of technology in the classroom. Walden

University. Retrieved from https://www.waldenu.edu/programs/education/resource/top-

five-benefits-of-technology-in-the-classroom
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Warmuth, Kelly (2014, November 03). Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation in the classroom.

University of Notre Dame. Retrieved from http://sites.nd.edu/kaneb/2014/11/03/intrinsic-

and-extrinsic-motivation-in-the-classroom/
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Essay Exam: Part Two

Question: What online teaching/learning tools do you plan on using in your future classroom?

Before I took this class, I didn’t know if I was going to make technology a huge tool or

resource for my students to use in the classroom. However, I have recognized the importance of

incorporating technology into the classroom, and plan to do it in numerous ways. Some of those

ways include: incorporating videos into my lesson plans, using visual aids, and introducing

Learn Around the World into my classroom.

Using videos is a great way for students to learn. Per the University of Queensland, there

are many benefits when you incorporate videos into your classroom. They say that there are three

may benefits to using videos: they facilitate thinking and problem solving, they assist with

mastery of skill, and they inspire and engage students (2013). By showing videos, it provides

students with visual cues in order to help them better understand, and remember. In one of my

previous placements, my teacher would tell me that with every lesson she would do all of her

“regular” teaching, and show a video. She told me that by doing this, she was hoping that the

visuals within the video would better help her visual learners. The three main resources she

would use to show videos in her classroom are YouTube, TeacherTube, and Brain Pop Jr. I

absolutely love each of these websites and would suggest for other teachers to use them as well.

In addition to videos, I also plan on using visual aids in my classroom. As a student, I am

a mix of a visual and kinesthetic learner—I need to see something, and then try to do it myself. It

is so important for teachers to include visual aids in the classroom. “The many benefits of visual

aids include helping learners improve reading comprehension skills, illustrating or reinforcing a

skill or concept, differentiating instruction and relieving anxiety or boredom by presenting

information in a new and exciting way” (Ministry of Education, 2016). In addition to adding
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pictures or clipart to my worksheets, I also want to use different visual aids. One that I didn’t

know about before this class was Inspiration. When exploring the different tools on the software

and creating my graphic organizers/concept maps, I was blown away with how simple it was. I

love the idea of using it in my future classroom, or even having my students create their own too.

This is a great visual aid that allows students to see how different topics are all interrelated.

Additionally, as a teacher I hope to work in a school district that has an Interactive Whiteboard.

An interactive whiteboard “is basically a screen that interacts with the images you project by

touching the screen or using special markers” (Maitreyee, 2018). You can do so much with this

piece of technology, and it benefits the students. My current placement teacher has a SMART

Board and they do almost every single lesson on it. I love how interactive it is; both my

placement teacher and her students interact with it. One day, I hope to use one in my future

classroom!

Recently, I learned about this website called, Learn Around the World. This is such a

beyond amazing website that connects students with other children around the world. After

researching there are so many cool possibilities with this website, for both students and teachers.

One thing that I find to be cool is you can have your student’s sign-up, and when they sign-up

they get to work on a collaborative project with another child anywhere around the world. In

addition to these projects, your classroom can go on a “virtual field trip”. On these field trips

students can explore many foreign lands (Learn Around the World, 2018). By doing this,

students can witness cultural differences and gain a greater understanding of the world around

them. I think this is a great website that could foster student curiosity. This website offers many

benefits to students and think it would be a great resource to incorporate into my classroom.

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References:

Learn Around the World (2018). Virtual field trips. Learn Around the World. Retrieved from

http://www.learnaroundtheworld.com/about/

Maitreyee (2018, February 01). Different types of classroom technology. Study.com. Retrieved

from https://study.com/academy/lesson/different-types-of-classroom-technology.html

Ministry of Education, Guyana (2016, August 08). Why are teaching aids important? Ministry of

Education, Guyana. Retrieved from

https://www.education.gov.gy/web/index.php/teachers/tips-for-teaching/item/2143-why-

are-teaching-aids-important

University of Queensland (2013). Pedagogical benefits. The University of Queensland Australia.

Retrieved from http://www.uq.edu.au/teach/video-teach-learn/ped-benefits.html