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Technology in teacher's life

A short essay about technology in schools and how one may take advantage of it
Without doubts we may say that technology is almost vital in our lives. It surrounds us like a web. Perhaps we may escape it by running villages, but if we approach agglomerations – not always so big! - over and over we meet a dense web of electronics, screens and cables. Technology has finally become the part of lives of most of us and more and more people uses its advantages.

But the question is, how a modern teacher is able to use this whole bunch of electronics in order to stay effective in his job or even become more successful? The obvious solutions come to our heads almost instantly – we use photocopiers in our work, that's the one. The second is, who would imagine making listening exercises without CD recorder? As we see, technology has already penetrated lives of teachers and no-one would resign from it.

But there's more about it. Some say that a modern teacher can't be really effective without use of computers. Yes, these cruel machines getting broken all the time. Yes, we are talking about operation systems(OS-es) such as Linux or Windows. Projectors. Scanners. E-mail. Graphic editors and learning platforms. Scary things, eh?

The fact is, it's not that bad with teachers. Some of them are migrating to the Windows. They don't like it, but they're doing it. They are accustomed to use of simple mechanisms, but don't like to use so called 'high-tech' in teaching.

But – hey! If everything was O.K. with teachers I wouldn't be writing the article now. Devil is in details. Teachers are using modern technology because they don't have any other options. They don't use all the potential that is in it and that's the point. It's a pity, that some of them fear using it.

'All right!' - some may say. 'So you've damned all those ones who don't feel like incorporating it in their lessons. What's with you? Some simply can teach without actually using that all!'. Well, you may be partly right. But I'm writing not to encourage someone to use it when almost everybody is using it.

It's easier with it. That's what I want to tell.

There are various programs(like HotPotatoes, without looking too far) which provide some tools to make exercises like tests or match tasks. The preparation of a test may take few minutes as it's a matter of few clicks. Yes, advanced programs which use HTML may require some skills to use, but the outcome is worth the effort. Besides, in e-learning or blended learning teachers are used to make materials just once. Then they use the same materials in almost unaltered way. Some course tutors may consider this occasion, especially if they do short courses and don't have time for endless materials redoing .

The learning platforms may be also a neat improvement to teachers and learners. Moodle, Nicenet or Ning are offering such learning platforms, where the teacher may stay constantly in touch with his students, discussing exams' dates and even doing tests via Internet. New software provides options which don't allow students to look at materials, let alone cheating. And even more. Windows with his Movie Maker introduces possibility to make learning courses using freeware materials from the web. These materials belong to Public Domain and no-one has to pay, like for new handbooks. Graphic editors allow teacher to modify these graphic files freely, as long as he's not making financial profit from using it. It seems that the Internet with his free-to-download materials is what teachers were dreaming all the time. It is just a matter what can you find in this sea of files and how you use it.

Summing things up, some may find it useless to use computers during lessons, some may find here some inspirations. It's generally O.K., hence everyone has its own way of teaching. But we cannot stop technolyzing our lives and the process is on. Modern teachers are already learning how to use computers and one has to use these things to be tip-top in hers job. The new generation of teachers is coming on. Be prepared for technology in our lives. That means, schools.

Jacek Pająk

Dodano: 2009-01-05
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Nauka angielskiego online

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