Why Should Teachers Use Technology?
The age of paper
When I was a student, I had sometimes to save my pocket-money to buy books. My only resources consisted of these few books and some newspapers and magazines. Our teachers were the holders of the truth and we had to be attentive to every word they utter. Now things have changed and will undoubtedly change ever more. Technology has entered every room, fulfilled every human need of knowledge and made our lives interwoven with information. So shall we, as teachers, stick to the conventional ways of teaching while our students are searching for what they need elsewhere?
Information is our currency as teachers. We used to get information in books, encyclopedias, journals, magazines, newspapers, radio, and television. These were also the sources of information for our teachers at that time. Some teachers still stick to these sources and believe that they cannot be replaced. There is nothing wrong with holding to these now traditional tools. What I believe is wrong is that information does no longer come only from books. There are other means by which information is communicated in an unprecedented way. Some of our students have already access to these means.They are fervent users of virtual libraries, online educational tools and forums on the internet.
Technology for sharing and communicating
Any good teacher can of course engage his students into the learning process using traditional methods. I am not saying that teachers must use technology in every lesson. But I believe that if we as educators want to keep up with the pace and amount of information delivered through technology, we cannot hold on our old practices any more. We have to communicate and share ideas, collaborate with other educators, learn about and deliver best practices of other educators. This is all possible through the use of Social Media and the Professional Learning Network. (Here is a link to a post about “Developing Your Personal Learning Network Using Twitter” that teachers may be interested in.)
Updating teaching practices
I cannot see how a doctor will be able to provide a cure for the illnesses for which research is still trying to find better treatment without being up-to-date himself. A doctor who gets his degree and opens an office practicing his profession with the same old prescriptions will undoubtedly be unsuccessful if not deserted. The same thing applies to educators. The need to be up-to-date is urgent if we don’t want to be lagging behind. Technology offers just that – information