Design Your Lessons To Perfection With Digital Tech: 5 Flawless Tips
8th January 2024
With all the educational applications out there, it might sometimes get overwhelming to figure out the best one for yourself. As teachers who are new to integrating tools for their classroom teaching, you might also struggle to utilize these tools at their best. While digital applications can engage, enhance, and extend the learning of their students, teachers need to use careful pedagogy in conjunction.
Here is a guiding framework for designing lessons with tools that focus on sound pedagogy and optimum student learning.
Ways To Design The Best Lessons For Your Students
Take a look at these steps to design lessons that will increase your students' positive behavior and foster cognitive engagement:
1. Don’t Distract, Engage
Students these days have access to technology all the time and hence teachers need to be mindful of how it can distract the students from their learning goals. Most apps these days have several distracting features like rewards or stickers to earn, avatars to customize, irrelevant clickable sounds, games, etc.
Teachers can lessen these distractions by performing the following things:
- Try to minimize distracting elements in an app as and when required
- Offer checklists to help them stay focused on their learning objectives
- Provide short breaks to help them recharge their brains and keep them motivated
- Set time limits for a particular task with the apps to prevent them from going overboard
2. Boost Learning Goals
As educators when you encourage students to use their higher-level thinking skills and technology, it can help them develop their learning objectives. When students learn how to use apps for creating, researching, analyzing, and synthesizing, it supports their learning growth.
You can use these tools to encourage their higher-level thinking rather than heavily relying on practice and drills:
- Select creative tools to allow your students to create and design books, worksheets, etc
- Integrate pedagogical strategies with tools such as check-ins, goal setting, gallery walks, etc to create better opportunities
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3. Extend Learning
It is easy for an app to concentrate on simple concepts and not connect with the everyday lives of the students. However, for students to understand a concept, they need to be able to implement it in real life. Therefore, as instructors you can choose tools and apps that enable real-world application of the ideas you are teaching.
Some of the ideas include:
- Use resources that include many ways to use live images in everyday curriculum across all subject areas
- Find tools that can connect students to experts thereby enabling them to participate in scientific discovery
- Use modal tools that allow teachers to create scavenger hunt challenges, post new activities and missions
4. Incorporate Social Opportunities
Research reveals that student interactions are essential for student growth. And using technology should provide them with social opportunities rather than taking them away. Learners should be able to use the moments to learn and reflect on their isolated lives. Just because an app is developed to be used in isolation, doesn't mean that teachers cannot add social interactions around this application. Encouraging students to become social while using technology will make learning objectives more achievable and successful.
Here are some ways to make students more social with the use of technology:
- Integrating collaborative learning strategies like jigsaw or maps can allow students to research in groups and become experts
- Pairing students with stimulation games can help them build strategies to learn and navigate the game to win
- If you use software that can only be used by one student, consider using a reflective share-aloud to engage the class
Incorporate Technology In Your Designs
If you can approach technology with a strong framework, and enhance, engage, and extend learning goals through it, you are more likely to have success when using technology. A few careful adjustments can make a great deal of difference when it comes to using technology tools and learning. If you find yourself struggling, consider pursuing a MA in Education with Teaching Technology to provide opportunities for your students to be social and connect with the real world.
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Written By : Victoria Lewis