Technology has radically changed education. Access to the internet in schools has tripled in the last twenty years. Classroom materials such as textbooks, journals, encyclopedias and magazines have now all been replace by internet access. The printed world is still readily available and useful but students have an affinity to the internet primarily because of convenience. This has created an endless sea of information in which students have access to millions of resources at their fingertips.
Motivation & Self Esteem
Educators have seen increased student motivation and self esteem with the incorporation of technology. The internet creates a less intimidating setting for students to research and thus increase their knowledge. They are able to ask questions they sometimes would not be confident enough to ask in a classroom setting. Therefore students have been able to show initiative and do independent research. To say that technology is integral to student research would be an understatement; the internet has transformed the fundamental way knowledge is transferred.
Computers are a new outlet for students who are sometimes less stimulated by traditional means of education. These students are more intrigued by tasks when they are computer based due to the fact that they have the sense of more control in a virtual environment. When introduced to technology at the elementary school level students seamlessly adapt and excel in the use of the technology.
Increased Resources Use
Educators reported that with the help of technology students are now using more resources and the length of their “Works Cited” pages have increased. The ease of access provided by technology is what has made it possible for students to review more resources in shorter periods of time and therefore produce more well rounded products.
Smart Classroom Design
Designing a smart classroom is designing for an ever changing audience whose users use new technology everyday. The important factor to keep in mind is flexibility. There should be an understanding that this space will constantly change for new users and their new technological needs. In the design process an appropriate level of infrastructure should be provided which can host a wide range of technological equipment. Where in many instances architects set out to create a very specialized space for the “Smart Classroom “creating the most flexible space possible is the ideal goal.
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