A Simple yet Impactful Form of Technology

Sarah Rojas, Lower School Spanish Teacher
Technology comes in a variety of forms:  google cardboard, iPads, or QR codes. An ever-advancing applied science, there are technological opportunities that can help in the classroom in providing the best education for students. Although there is constantly innovation, sometimes the simplest technology can do wonders for a learner. I am talking about an interactive screen in the classroom.  
This type of technology is obviously a huge advancement from the blackboards and chalk I had when in elementary school. The use of an interactive screen, whether it is a smart board or an interactive projector, can enhance the learning experience for students. Not only does the interactivity of the board allow for teachers to have better interaction with students, but it also makes learning more fun and engaging. Using an interactive screen allows for more hands-on learning and the ability to reach students with different learning styles.   

Imagine two different scenarios: one where the teacher has to go back and forth from the computer to switch the projected image, and two, where the teacher is able to remain up front and switch the image with a touch of the finger or a pen. Now, which is better? From a classroom management standpoint, the latter is the better scenario. Being able to keep attention on the students rather than going back and forth allows for a better organized and well managed class while maximizing time spent in teaching. 

An interactive board allows for teachers to use a variety of techniques to reach different students. Some students learn verbally, some visually, some kinesthetically and others aurally. With the interactive board available to teachers, teaching a unit and reaching all students becomes easier. Instead of just having an image projected on the screen, students are now able to engage. Let’s say students are learning a language and the focus is “places around town.” The teacher may project a community map on the board. With just a tap of each place’s image, students can see and hear how the word is pronounced. This reaches the aural and visual learners. To go further with this unit, the teacher can read a passage based on where different places are located and students must move the places to the correct spot on the map based on what they hear. This allows all students to continue learning, but in an interactive and engaging way. 

An interactive tech option in the classroom helps with student engagement and success. The teacher is able to reach different students and their needs.  Although a simple form of technology, the need of an interactive screen is apparent.  

Señora Rojas has been teaching Spanish since 2013 to students in Middle School and currently in Lower School. Before teaching Spanish, Señora Rojas was a Peace Corps volunteer in Nicaragua from 2011-2013.  In 2011, Señora Rojas graduated from Christopher Newport University with her Master's of Arts in Teaching, and in 2010 graduated with her Bachelor's in Spanish and Minor in French from the same university. While studying at Christopher Newport University, Señora Rojas did three study abroad programs. She traveled to Costa Rica, Spain and Switzerland. While doing student teaching she taught Spanish to lower school students at Balboa Academy in Panama. 
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