The face of education has changed drastically in the 21st century, particularly as education embraces the age of technology and incorporates elements of technology within K-12 schools. This is necessary to equip and prepare students with the technological literacy they will need in college and beyond, throughout life, as global citizens. Among the newest form of technology to implement within the curriculum is mobile technology, which includes such devices as digital tablets, smartphones, iPads, iPods, e-readers and other types of electronic gadgets.
8 Reasons for K-12 Schools To Use Mobile Technology in Their Curriculum
Principles, IT directors, superintendents, and stakeholders should purchase mobile technology devices for their students and teachers. The pros or benefits of purchasing mobile technology include these eight considerations.
1. Mobile technology provides students with complex problem solving skills. As technology continues to evolve, students trained in schools on proper use of mobile technology will be better prepared for the future. They will acquire the complex problem-solving ability to walk up to any technological environment and device, and be able to figure out how to use it.
2. Mobile technology helps students acquire skill sets that will be critical for their future success. Since the job market is quickly evolving, students are no longer competing on a limited local basis; they are competing globally, due to the Internet making global access and interaction available. The ability of students to acquire and demonstrate their competencies with mobile technologies will become increasingly critical in the upcoming years and decades.
3. Mobile technology provides teachers with unlimited access to multimedia rich resources. Current teaching strategies--such as Common Core, flipped classrooms, and blended learning--all benefit from the increasing use of mobile technology. It also provides teachers with unlimited multimedia-enriched curriculum resources that greatly benefit students.
4. Mobile technology gives teachers the ability to use tools students are already comfortable with using. Since so many students already use mobile devices in their everyday lives, it is easy to redirect this use and transition into using mobile technology for school activities. In fact, Darrell West--founding Director of the Center for Technology Innovation, published a paper stating that 52 percent of students in grades 6-12 regularly use digital tablets for everyday schoolwork.
5. Mobile technology provides teachers and students with a superior way to collect and organize educational content. Digital portfolios and other collaborative mobile technology tools, such as cloud drives, increasingly provide secure and accessible ways to conveniently store and share data.
6. Mobile technology provides students a easier way to collaborate on projects. Students can now use their mobile devices such as smart phones, iPads, Chromebooks, or laptops to store and share data that is easily accessible both in and outside the classroom. This makes it possible to collaborate with other students in the classroom or long distance with other classrooms around the world.
7. Mobile technology creates learning opportunities before, during, and after class – 24/7 learning. Teachers can now be confident that students will continue their learning outside of class. Students can learn beyond their schools' curriculum by tapping into experts on topics that interest them or support their classroom learning.
8. Mobile technology allows unlimited ways to differentiate learning. Each student learns differently and mobile technology allows students to tap into the best media type to accommodate their learning styles. There resources align with all of Bloom’s taxonomy of learning domains, which include the following: knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation.
A common acronym well-known in schools now is BYOD -- this stands for Bring Your Own Device, and is often the concept or initiative that provides relief to strained school budgets. As students are encouraged and allowed to bring their own electronic and digital devices to school, under strict policy guidelines for their use as mobile technology in the classroom, they acquire even greater skills for appropriate use in school and beyond.