The Use of Technology in the Classroom

May 19, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Posted in uncategorized | 2 Comments

Post written by Max Zeller

There has been a lot of talk about violent video games and how they effect students in the classroom. According to Craig Anderson

 Aggressive behaviour, aggressive cognition, aggressive affect, helping behaviour, and physiological arousal. They found significant effects of violent video games on each of these five variables. Exposure to violent video games increases aggressive thoughts, feelings, and behaviours, increases arousal, and decreases helping behaviour. There was no evidence of moderator effects. That is, these effects appeared to be about the same for males and females, for youths less than 18 years as well as older participants, and for experimental and correlation studies.

These are statistical studies that clearly show that violent video games could effect the behaviors of our students, but there are other studies that show that what video games do can help teachers keep their students engaged (only focus on the seven dimensions of video games).

Videogames themselves are becoming increasingly sophisticated (e.g., Poole 2000; Provenzo 1991) to the point that the violence simulated in such games as Doom II have been adopted by the military to train marine combat units (Provenzo 2003), who obviously believe in the educational benefits that will result. Video games are excellent teachers along several dimensions

If you focus on the seven dimensions of video games it explains seven ways why video games are good teachers and what we can learn from them. One example is there are always clear objectives in a video game. No matter what the content of a video game is, you always know what the goal is and you receive instant feedback when you succeed at that goal or fail to reach the next level.

The goal of this post is to show there are positives and negatives to any type of technology, especially technology in the classroom. I think if a teacher is well acquainted with the piece of technology, then there are benefits to using it for students. On the other side of the spectrum, in a classroom where the teacher has no idea what they are doing with technology can waste half of the class trying to figure out what they are trying to accomplish. Many believe that the teacher can learn how to use certain aspects of technology with students but I feel that is waste of student time. Any thoughts?

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2 Comments »

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  1. Yeah you’re right Max. Too often, the technology comes before the content. As teachers, we need to be very mindful of our purpose, and that is to teach content and teach our students to be learners. Using a piece of technology simply because its new and exciting or has a bunch of bells and whistles can actually be detrimental to students if its application with the content is not thoroughly explored. Content first, then technology.

  2. I agree that some times the presentation of new technology in a class room can just lead to more confusion, however I definitely do not feel that trying to learn new aspects of technology along with students as appossed to learning it on your own and then presenting it to them is a waste of time. Many students these days are much more technologically advanced than many teachers. The process of learning something new along with a student might give them the opportunity to teach something that they can offer towards the new technology, and to be able to teach something to others is a key component in gaining greater understanding. I feel the only way a teacher could try to implement a new technology to a class and fail would be if they tried to present something that they were still shaky on and was disintrested in any insight the students tried to offer. Even if the students and teacher tried to tackle something new and did not succeed in reaching the stated goal, there will still be lesson to gain in the activity of working with the teacher as appossed to for the teacher.


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