I’ve learned that technology can open up a ton of new opportunities for students. For example, engaging students in a lesson using virtual reality allows for exploration of places in the world the student may never be able to learn about in real life. Technology should add to a student’s learning experience and not be used when it is unnecessary. Since technology is used heavily for communication and research in nearly every modern job, integrating technology into the classroom allows students to gain functional skills and knowledge about the many uses for technology and what appropriate use looks like. I feel like I have become a ‘tech-savy’ teacher because I can now see when a lesson may be enhanced by integrating technology and I can think ahead to what barriers I may have. For example not all apps are free and only certain programs allows students to collaborate on at the same time.
I believe I used each mini project in the class as an opportunity to create a project I could use in my classroom in the future or as an example. The projects were intrinsically motivating because they were purposeful and useful to me and also allowed me to be creative. This tells me that if I incorporate technology into the class that allows my own students to be creative (within safe boundaries), they will be more likely to be motivated to do their best work. I am very glad I was allowed the time to explore the different technological tools so I could think through the pros and cons of having my future students use each tool as well.