The Relevance and Use of Mobile Devices in the Classrooms of Today

Why should a teacher be prepared to allow or require students to use mobile devices in the classroom?

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Technology and mobile devices are now an inexorable component of society and pretending they do not exist by banning them from the classroom is no longer a practical approach to education.

“In 2001, Marc Prensky warned us, “Our students have changed radically. Today’s students are no longer the people our educational system was designed to teach.” He went on to describe how these “digital natives” are being exposed to more gadgets and technology than was ever thought possible. This is having a profound effect on the ways in which children learn. They are more engaged in learning when using the latest technological gadgets, because it is what they are most used to interacting with. Our students don’t just want mobile learning, they need it” (Mobile Learning Technologies for 21st Century Classrooms).

Why is Technology Use in the Classroom Important?

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It is inconceivable that we should endeavor to prepare students for the 21st Century university and workplace, but neglect the use of 21st Century tools and technology in the educational process.

In addition, there are a multitude of ways mobile devices and technology in the classroom can enhance learning for students with disabilities. It is imperative that we provide these students with the tools that best help them in their educational journey.

Mobile Devices Can Be Used to Make The Following Tasks More Enjoyable

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Guiding principles / Best practices

  • Check the school policy and requirements concerning the use of mobile devices in the classroom.
  • Before implementing mobile learning, teachers should inform the student’s parents. The proper procedure for this should be a part of the schools policy. Technology use in the classroom will most likely be a new concept for parents and they may require some convincing and reassurances about mobile device usage in the class.
  • Create and implement classroom management procedures for the involvement of mobile devices. These procedures should also be communicated to the parents for the sake of clarity.
  • Determine which mobile device is best for your students depending on their level age and the subject material.
  • Set and communicate achievable objectives concerning the use of mobile devices and provide students with concise rubrics and guidelines for the expectations of mobile use.
  • Have a plan B in case of technology failure.
  • Teach Safety and Etiquette: The ability to safely use technology is a skill in and of itself. Students need to know and exhibit proper behavior, in class, as well as on devices. They might also need some additional help in how to deal with fellow students who might not be following these safety guidelines. Cyber-bullying is a perfect example of the need for this practice.  (A fun lesson focusing on good manners with phones can be found on the Teaching Generation Text blog).
  • Prevent Cyber-Bullying:

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Extra Resources for Trends and Managing Device Use

  1. The Epic BYOD Toolchest (51 Tools You Can Use Now)
  2. The Innovative Educator
  3. ilearntechnology.com
  4. educationtechnologyblog.com
  5. Follow #mobilelearning, @InnovativeEdu and @WillynWebb on Twitter.
  6. Join The Innovative Educator group on Facebook.

Anti-Cyber Bullying Resources

  1. http://www.stopcyberbullying.org/

Resources

T. (2016). Tech Edge, iPads In The Classroom – Episode 194, Managing Device Use. Retrieved August 27, 2016, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05OXjaDGRfo

West, D. M. (September 17, 2013) Mobile Learning: Transforming Education, Engaging Students, and Improving Outcomes. Retrieved August 22, 2016 fromhttps://www.brookings.edu/research/mobile-learning-transforming-education-engaging-students-and-improving-outcomes/

Wylie, J. (n.d.) Mobile Learning Technologies for 21st Century Classrooms. Retrieved August 22, 2016 from http://www.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3754742

Adeboye, D. (July 20, 2016) 5 Effective Uses of Mobile Technology in the Classroom. Retrieved August 22, 2016 from https://elearningindustry.com/5-uses-mobile-technology-in-the-classroom

Dabbs, L. (October 10, 2012) Mobile Learning Support for New Teachers. Retrieved August 22, 2016 from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/mobile-learning-support-new-teachers-lisa-dabbs

Daccord, T. (September 27, 2012) 5 Critical Mistakes Schools Make With Ipads (And How To Correct Them). Retrieved August 22, 2016 from http://www.edudemic.com/5-critical-mistakes-schools-ipads-and-correct-them/

Cyberbullying: What Teachers and Schools Can Do | Scholastic.com. (n.d.). Retrieved August 27, 2016, from http://www.scholastic.com/teachers/article/cyberbullying-what-teachers-and-schools-can-do
Bullying and Cyberbullying: What Teachers Can Do. (n.d.). Retrieved August 27, 2016, from http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/what-schools-can-do-to-stop-bullying.shtml
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