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Technology in the Early Childhood Classroom

Instructor: Derek Hughes
Technology is an incredibly important part of any classroom. This lesson will introduce you to several pieces of technology you will likely see in many early childhood classrooms.

Classroom Technology

Every day, we interact with a wide variety of technology. Classroom technology is one subset that is used to enhance and supplement student learning. These are devices that you will find in the classroom used by students and teachers. Classroom technology has become an integral part of any classroom, and being familiar with the different devices and uses is key to utilizing it effectively.

In order to explore several pieces of classroom technology, this lesson will look at a second grade class taught by Mr. Thompson.

Mr. Thompson's Class

Mr. Thompson is a second grade teacher at Elemeno Elementary. He is also very passionate about technology and enjoys trying new tools to use in his lessons. Therefore, his class is a useful class to look at to see how you can use various technologies in your early childhood classroom.

Interactive Whiteboard

The centerpiece of Mr. Thompson's room is his interactive whiteboard. An interactive whiteboard is a piece of technology that connects to a computer, displays the image on the computer, and allows an individual to interact with what is on the screen through the use of an electronic pen.

Mr. Thompson uses his interactive whiteboard in a variety of ways throughout the day. It can be used to project videos or information for the class to see or to display presentations that encourage students to interact. There are also various websites that make educational games tailored for touch screens that allow students to practice various concepts.

For example, a touch screen game in which students hit a spot on the screen to throw a ball at targets helps them practice synonyms and antonyms. Mr. Thompson can also create a presentation that includes multiple choice questions. He can then call students up to the interactive whiteboard to have them select what they think is the likely answer.

There are a wide variety of uses for interactive whiteboards. How you use it in your classroom depends on training, creativity, and research. While some tools and ideas will be provided by your school or district, there are many more to be found.

Laptops

While Mr. Thompson mostly uses his interactive whiteboard for whole-group instruction and activities, he uses several other devices to allow students to work in groups or independently. The first of these is a laptop. Elemeno Elementary is fortunate to have several laptop carts available for teachers to sign out and use with their class.

Mr. Thompson's students typically use the laptops to access educational websites to practice various skills and concepts. Sometimes, Mr. Thompson also has his students use the laptops to create work and collaborate with one another on projects. However, it is important that students are taught or trained to use the various tools and programs before using them to complete work.

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