EDTECH 575

Integrating Technology into the Classroom Curriculum Final Project

by Crystal Gasell


This website is a project for EDTECH 575 at Boise State University.

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It is clear that since the introduction of the affordable personal computer in the 1980’s, technology has made a big impact in the K-12 classroom. As technology becomes more readily available in schools, the role of the teacher changes to facilitator of learning where students work in cooperative groups. A “well-structured heterogeneous groups have been shown to have a powerful effect on learning. Such groupings also have the advantage of promoting teamwork, leadership and other life/career skills, while enhancing student academic performance” (Partnership for 21st Century Skills, 2007). With the anticipated increase of technology related careers in the future, educators must prepare their students by using technology as a teaching and learning tool. By using technology as a teaching and learning tool, research suggests that students will perform better, teachers’ satisfaction and instruction will improve, and our students will be competitive in a global workforce.

According to the Partnership of 21st Century Skills, “learning and innovation skills increasingly being recognized as the skills that separate students who are prepared for increasingly complex life and work environment in the 21st century, and those who are not” (Partnership of 21st Century Skills, 2008). By teaching students learning and innovation skills, we are able to create lifelong learners and thinkers that will flourish in a competitive global workforce. As we prepare our students for an increasingly technological dependant world, we are preparing them for success.

In order to prepare students, the U.S. Department of Education has seven major action steps and recommendations for our country’s schools. Their recommendations focus on the tasks that need to be accomplished in order to increase student achievement, close the digital divide, and create digitally rich content. The Department of Education’s plan clearly promotes strong leadership within the school community, supports teacher training, and encourages broadband access availability to both students and teachers (U.S. Department of Education, 2008). Without a doubt, the plan provides a starting point for struggling schools and teachers to begin a path towards creating a content rich, creative classroom.

To sum it up, technology is a valuable tool for helping close the achievement gap and meeting the needs of all students on their individual level because “learners are empowered to participate, learn, and create knowledge in ways that are personally meaningful and engaging” when using technology (McLoughlin and Lee, 2008). If schools make technology plans, provide training and support for teachers, we can be certain that our students will be ready for their futures.