When you take advantage of the resources of computers and the internet, you can make teaching much easier, but that is not always a reality for some students. Most kids are not growing up with their own iPhones and laptops. Those things are privileges that you must earn. Even for those families that can afford to give their kids nice things like those, they are sure to delay those rewards for as long as possible. What does a nine year old need their own smartphone for? It is more dangerous than it would be healthy. That said, there are some features that you miss out on when you are not using tech. Here are a few of the useful features of edtech apps that I hope to see utilized more in the classroom going forward.
The thing about all of these resources for teachers is that teachers do not have a lot of disposable income to spare. Schools might not be able to afford paying for more services to support teachers and that means that the teachers have to pay out of their pockets. The good thing about many of the edtech apps is that they are free to use. They make money other ways to make sure that teachers are not gouged.
Shared Files and Screens
When you get an assignment back from a teacher and look at your grade, it can be a cold and impersonal experience. The teacher might try to write some notes, but they are limited by space and time to give you the abridged version. With screen casting apps, you can do the walkthrough live and even add voice. Using this, you can turn grading into an interactive experience where the student can see and hear what they did wrong instead of tossing the graded work into their bag and never seeing it again.
Ease of Access
The cloud is a wonderful thing, even if there is a generation that seems intent on not understanding how to use it. For me, the ability to upload my files to the cloud and then access them wherever I want is pretty incredible. In the classroom, this is helpful because teachers do not have to worry about being at a specific computer in the school to upload or be on that network. When you can access files and folder from your home or your phone, it makes the whole process so much easier. This also goes for students, who have busy schedules and want to know that they can do assignments when it is convenient. I used to run into the problem a lot where I could not do my homework because I did not physically have the assignment and needed to wait until I got home to my backpack to find it. That is different now, where you can log onto portals to view assignments and even turn them in there too. If we can do more to make the assignments easy to get to, the students are much more likely to complete them.