Like it or not, computers have become a part of our daily lives. As such, it is important to expose students to this technology and teach them how to use it correctly.
An effective way to do this is through the use of computers and other such devices in the classroom. By including technology in the classroom, students are able to learn how to use it in a way that will help them for the rest of their lives, through college and into the workplace.
While it is true that technology is currently being used at a higher rate in wealthier schools, a few schools have proven it is possible to effectively include technology in the classroom in lower income areas or schools with smaller budgets.
Edison School in Yoder, Colorado is one example of how schools populated with low-income students can effectively incorporate technology in the classroom. It is estimated that 25-30 percent of the students at Edison don’t have internet access at home and 75 percent of the K-12 students qualify for free or reduced lunch. However, these numbers haven’t stopped the school from investing in enough devices for every student in the school to use one.
Technology is used every day in the classrooms at Edison School. Whether it is practicing reading and writing, doing research for a project or the proposed required computer-science course, every student interacts with technology throughout their time at Edison School.
Many states have developed initiatives to ensure low-income schools have access to technology, and as such, there are a variety of grants available to these schools to fund their technology plans, including 1:1 programs.
One way schools can maneuver around students who don’t have internet access at home is to invest in a solution that allows resources needed to complete homework assignments to be downloaded onto the student’s device for access without internet.
The MediaCAST iPad app allows teachers to do just that. In schools that have implemented 1:1 programs with iPads, the iPad app allows teachers to easily assign and distribute resources to groups of students at once. Expiration dates can even be set to ensure the license is returned once the resource is no longer needed by the students.
With increasing funding to aide schools implement technology into their classrooms, hopefully all school children will have access to computers and other devices in the near future.