Sage Advice: Effective Technology

What technology is most effective in the classroom?

What technology is most effective in the classroom?

Each week I create a PowerPoint presentation of goals and activities that are intrinsic to the success of the class. I include relevant links to current events and topics. I refer to it throughout the week and edit and add to it as we discover relevant material. At the end of the week, I use the PowerPoint to review for the quiz or to reteach difficult concepts. I also print copies for absent students.

Barbara Masterson

English teacher
Magnolia High School
Magnolia, Texas

The most engaging and practical use of technology in my classroom is presentation software for reports, review activities, and games.The power of images combined with text and audio is so great that nearly all styles are addressed. My favorite is my homemade Jeopardy game, with scoreboard, answers, and theme music. In geometry class, at the end of a unit, we don't review; we play Geopardy!

Jim Weber

Math/science teacher and technology coordinator
Mercy Catholic High School
Red Bluff, California

An LCD projector connected to a computer. The projector allows anything on the computer screen to be projected on a basic, white overhead screen. Think of all the places in cyberspace that you could go with your class while surfing the Internet together or watching streaming video.The LCD projector is also versatile. You can hook up a DVD player, a VCR, or another output device for big-screen viewings.

Brigitt Donlon

FAME curriculum coordinator
Dent Middle School
Columbia, South Carolina

The software that holds the most promise is really a technological philosophy: the open-source movement. Give every student an old laptop that businesses no longer use. Download a free, blindingly fast Linux operating system (www.puppylinux.com/puppy). A keychain flash drive with free software (www.openoffice.org) does 95 percent of everything Microsoft Office can do. Then let students read from free online classics (www.literature.org/authors) rather than having to lug around those cumbersome anthologies.

Todd Blake Finley

Associate professor of English education
East Carolina University
Greenville, North Carolina

The pencil and paper. Sure, they're old technology, but they work, they're cheap enough to give plenty to every kid in school, and they don't take any special training.

Jon Simon

First-grade teacher (and former computer consultant)
Searles Elementary School
Union City, California

I teach art, and any time a student wants information on a particular artist and to see images, we just go online together. I can access art museums and galleries around the world -- armchair travel at its best.

Susan Adler

Art instructor
Ridgway High School
Santa Rosa, California

A well-prepared teacher. She or he has the capacity to inform, challenge, and open minds. Using a variety of media -- chalkboard, computer, presentation tools -- and enthusiasm, a teacher can open a window in any subject.

Kathleen Gora

Technology facilitator
Most Blessed Sacrament School
Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Wireless technology permits students to access information on the Internet in real time while working on projects, cases, and presentations. A wireless educator station is essential to class facilitation. Real-time participation with peers and colleagues outside of the physical classroom simulates team dynamics.

Christine Cope

Pence lecturer
A. Gary Anderson Graduate School of Business
University of California
Riverside, California

I love United Streaming for using video clips in the classroom.United Streaming has every video subdivided into topic-specific clips just a few minutes long. Teachers have more control over the content. Much better than wasting forty-five minutes of a fifty-minute class with a video and notes.

Bill Lewis

Technology project coordinator
Austin Independent School District
Austin, Texas

Without any doubt, the most useful and powerful technology for use in the classroom today is the interactive whiteboard. A teacher finally has a tool that actively engages the students with all the learning potential that can be found on the Internet. Contemporary sites, animated applets, Web search engines, and whiteboard-specific software make a classroom more inviting and thought-provoking, no matter what the subject area.

Ron Larentowicz

Math/computer-science teacher
Woodlynde School
Strafford, Pennsylvania

When used correctly, video is the most effective technology in the classroom. Clipping segments and pausing during playback to ask questions make video an effective and complementary source of instruction. Students are likely to be more engaged when they are asked to interact throughout the video, as opposed to the end (when two or three might be sleeping).

T. J. Fletcher

Chemistry teacher
Eagan High School
Eagan, Minnesota
extra search terms: 
tech integration, using technology, innovative methods in classroom, students and technology
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Oct 2005: iKids
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Sage Advice

Comments (5)

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Dr. Ronald Paige (not verified)

I am surprised no one has

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I am surprised no one has mentioned the value for unlimited review provided to students, especially older students, with such products as Wimba Classroom archiving, Elluminate Live recording, Tegrity, or Camtasia Relay.

Janice Friesen (not verified)

Invisible

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Any technology that is transparent to teachers and students is the most effective. If any technology takes a lot of a teacher's time it will not be accepted widely. Some technologies are cool, but the focus is on the equipment rather than on the topic being studied. Technology should enhance, not call attention to itself.

Isabell Geller (not verified)

One of the very promising

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One of the very promising technology tools in my classroom to teach Biology has been the usage of flash cards through www.funnelbrain.com. I create the flashcards and then my students login to revise daily lessons. I can see the improvements and mistakes made by each student which also helps me in improving my flash cards. These cards have photos, videos and audio features which keeps my students interested. This also saves paper and printing costs to a great deal.

Isabell
High school teacher
Montessori Public
Houston

Kelly Ubbing (not verified)

Using Moodle in 7th-grade life sciences

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Our district is beginning to use Moodle (sort of like Blackboard) with teachers and students. Our technology specialist uses Moodle to train teachers how to use the most basic computer programs all the way to how to create a Moodle site for your own class. On Moodle, you can create activities, quizzes (that it will grade for you), as well as links to other websites that you might use (such as BrainPop, UnitedStreaming, etc). My summer school kids love it so far as they are my 'guinea pig' group before the real school year starts. They've taken Quia quizzes, watched videos and love being on the computer!

John Armstrong (not verified)

Technology in Special Education

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I have found that the use of web cams, digital cameras are fatastic in my lassroom of Moderate, Severe and Profound students with Disabilities. I use them to expose my students to almost everthing that they do not have the opportunity to do on their own or with family members.

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