Technology has changed our day-to-day lives, the way we work and study, and how we spend our leisure time. Technology has an important part to play in the design and development of a curriculum and has the potential to be an engaging and challenging experience for students. Utilising current technology in the classroom supports teachers in improving learning outcomes.
Integrating technology into the classroom and our everyday teaching isn’t just about replicating what we already do. It is about offering new ways of working and offering students new ways of interacting with information.
As an Apple Education Solution Partner, we have worked extensively with schools. Over this time, we have noticed that to successfully implement technology into the curriculum, schools need:
- A strong and supportive leadership team,
- Clear priorities and goals,
- Careful planning to achieve a shared curriculum vision,
- Involving teachers at all levels in the curriculum change, and
- Having a well-managed and robust technical infrastructure.
What do you want your curriculum to achieve?
When looking for opportunities to improve your curriculum with technology, you will need to establish a clear vision. In this vision, you will need to identify your key priorities, record your starting point (to reflect on later), and define goals.
When identifying your priorities, you will need to consider what you need to focus on to ensure that technology is enriching and enhancing the curriculum. A good foundational start is considering how you can build on your students’ engagement, their motivation to learn and encourage their aspirations.
By recording your starting point, you can identify how the school and its curriculum is currently supported by technology. You can also use this opportunity to judge your students’ and teachers’ ICT (Information Communication Technology) capability. From here, you can set clear goals and expectations that you want to see through extending and supporting the curriculum through technology.
Where does your current pedagogy fall short?
When first analysing and experimenting how technology could fit into your classroom, look for available opportunities. Start by researching for apps that could help students understand difficult concepts. You may notice that there may be a device or tablet that assists students struggling in some areas. For example, visual learners may benefit from a tablet when understanding literacy.
Shaping the curriculum in real-time
Tracking progress and differentiating learning through technology is useful for understanding if students have grasped concepts. Polling and quizzing apps can be integrated into lessons to gauge when you can move forward with a lesson. Using classroom workflow apps can also assist you and your teaching team to help deliver lessons that are customised to individual students’ needs.
Keep looking for new opportunities
The key to maintaining a modern and valuable curriculum is continually looking for new ways to incorporate technology to maximise student participation and learning. Signing up to mailing lists, a quick search of the web or browsing Pinterest can help provide you with information on the newest technology suited for the classroom.
How technology can impact a student
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us that our curriculum needs to be flexible in adaptation to accommodate the student’s location. Using technology to vary the pace and space to make learning more engaging is a step closer to meeting the needs of every student. Technology can now support virtual visits for teachers and students as well as ‘virtual tours’ to support lesson plans.
Some educators are using online technology to facilitate 1:1 support or moderate safe social networks, and encourage students to collaborate by sharing work. Some are also using online messenger services of email and encourage tailored support for students in need of extra support.
Why should you update the curriculum?
Teaching and learning takes place in different forms for different students and different classes. The core purpose of the curriculum is to set out what all students are required to learn. However, new studies continue to show that each student learns in unique ways at their own pace. Therefore, their learning expectations and experience is not going to be at the same rhythm or the same location as others.
Integrating technology makes it possible for teachers to become more flexible about when and where teaching and learning can take place. This also makes it easier for the curriculum to be built on students’ interests and abilities.
To learn about more opportunities to integrate technology into the classroom, or if you are wanting to upskill your teachers to effectively use these new tools in lesson plans, contact the friendly eStorm team at any time on 1300 378 676 or [email protected]