- THE Journal’s first Teaching with Technology survey asked teachers about their classroom tech use, their attitudes toward ed tech, and what they hope to see in the future.
- On the list of most-hated technologies was personal mobile devices, desktop computers and interactive whiteboards, while the educator wish list included 3D devices, virtual and augmented reality gear and detachable tablets like the Microsoft Surface.
- THE Journal reports the vast majority of teachers found laptops and tablets to be either essential or valuable in the classroom, and respondents said they use technology in their instruction 61% of the time, on average, with 10% of educators using it all the time.
Interactive whiteboards were all the rage in ed tech purchases several years ago, costing schools millions of dollars but gaining little in the classroom. Many teachers didn’t like them or know how to use them, and there were a number of reports of teachers working around the interactive whiteboards to use the traditional alternatives. Smart boards have been criticized even when they are used properly as being technology that doesn’t significantly alter or improve instruction.
The key for administrators considering any ed tech purchase is to think first about problems that need to be solved. Technology should be used strategically to achieve a solution, and administrators should track changes to be able to accurately assess whether the technology proved effective. For the most successful ed tech rollouts, teachers have to be on board with the plan and they need training to master the new technologies before introducing them in the classroom.