The FIVE most important technology tools to use in your classroom
1. A SmartBoard
Having a SmartBoard in your classroom transforms the environment into an interactive one. Interactive learning is much more engaging for students of any age! Presentations can be created on a software called ActivInspire, which allows you to take notes on the screen, incorporate sound upon touch and video easily. Students can be a part of the presentation by dragging and dropping items as well. A smart board can also be used for housekeeping tasks, students can mark themselves present upon entering the classroom, and in lower grades can select what they will be having for lunch that day.
2. Student Response Systems
There are many types of student response systems that can be used in the classroom. Some of these include: clickers, plickers, student iPads, and even students’ cell phones. Student response systems serve as an effective tool for formative assessment in the classroom. This is something many teachers struggle with implementing, using technology will make it more engaging and fun for the students. Not only that, but scores and results are received immediately and can be used to further guide or correct instruction!
Games are a form of active learning for students. They can be used for many purposes in the classroom, and there are many online sites that have a variety of games to be played. Students are much more likely to want to play these games and will be learning or reinforcing a concept in the process. They can be assigned as homework of an in-class activity during a center time. One of my favorite sites for games is pbskids.org! Students can play whatever game that they require help in, so they help differentiate instruction as well.
4. A Classroom Management Tool
As a first-year teacher it is important to be prepared with classroom management strategies. ClassDojo is a fun and effective classroom management tool to be used in the elementary classroom. Students love this app, it can be used online or on a device (iPad). Points are given for positive behavior, and they can be specified. Also, parents have access at all times, this is a great connection between the classroom and home.
5. Presentation Tools
It is important that the students utilize technology in the classroom as well. Using technology for student presentations or projects make it easier for students to organize their learning and ideas. For example, students can create a presentation on Buncee to be shared with the class. Using technology takes the stress of making it presentable and neat off, and allows students to focus more on content. It is also more fun for students to create a presentation using technology, there are more options for diverse learners. Some students could use Buncee, others could use Prezi while some use PowerPoint.