Friday, December 5, 2014

Video killed the radio star

I think that video games can definitely play a pivotal role in classrooms, especially as technology advances. It blows my mind to think about how much has changed just since I graduated high school in 2000 and how much more will change by the time my children are in high school. I remember having to use dial-up to do research and having to wait until everyone had gone to bed so that I wouldn't get kicked off the Internet when the phone rang. Now, my students do research on their phones before I can finish talking about a topic. As a high school English teacher, I'm not really sure how to use video games in my class, but my stepson who is in 1st grade uses websites like as well as games on our phones to get better at reading and recognizing sounds and letters. It fascinates me to watch him and how not only his knowledge but also his hand-eye coordination improve by using the technology that is available to him.

 One of the things that stood out to me the most from the presentation was how learning has adapted with the advancement of technology. How many teachers have adapted their teaching styles to meet those changes? I have known many teachers who didn't see the value of technology, especially video games, in their classes because it wasn't "traditional" education. But, if we look at our students, they are multi-tasking at all times. They are constantly texting, on social media, having a conversation, listening to music, and carrying out other tasks at the same time. I often stumble trying to walk and chew gum at the same time! We have to, as teachers, adapt our teaching methods to reach where our students are. If that means we find educational games to help them learn something, that's what we have to do.

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