There is not a week that brings a lot of new information showing the growing number and pervasiveness of tablet and smart phone technologies. Many questioned these developments that are transforming our technological landscape.
In commenting on the need to innovate in Ontario, Prime Minister Kathleen Wynne said recently that the reform of the school system in the province is the very first priority to make sure good employment prospects for future generations.
To enforce this commitment in the elementary school system, consider the potential of the digital tablet technology.
The first tablet technology was born in 2012. Since then, they have conquered the entire world by questions about how all this affects our children in general and preschoolers in particular.
Experts agree that the tablets have basically transformed the way of learning. Parents noted with amazement how their children as young as 18 years adapt to technology instinctively. There are some issues over the strength of it and how their children are taken by tablets in isolation from the rest of the world. Tablets have become the toy for students, teacher, and many preschoolers.
Is it a problem or solution?
Let’s start with the numbers. In accordance with the estimates, the users of mobile downloaded more than 70 million digital applications in 2013. Of these, several are dedicated to education and learning area, most of which are intended at preschoolers. At their best, applications motivate the development of concepts and models, and organization of ideas. They stimulate active problem solving. What parents should be concerned; these are the games and applications that require little or no interactivity.
On the second place, we must know the massive power that brings democratic transformation. There are more than 1million mobile models, including Smartphones, tablets and mini-tablets, at the moment. By 2018, this number will definitely explode 7.5 billion, or more than one tablet per person on the planet. The potential of this technology to influence and improve our lives is amazing.
Nevertheless, there are many challenging issues that result from this ‘revolution of tablets.’ Children who enter kindergarten and first grade in the coming years will have developed completely innovative and unique learning skills. In the last three years, they have chosen, designed and developed even they consume content. Unlike all the past generations, they have been able to manage and manipulate their own learning environment. These children are almost programmed to control their destiny. These are positive findings.
Think about the transition
Nevertheless, think for a moment what might take place when these children will unexpectedly encounter a structure and a learning environment as a classroom. For most of them, the transition could be overwhelming.
The challenging issues are looming. The good news is that much can be achieved provided that parents, caregivers, teachers and administrators work together.
Parents and caregivers should contribute a vital role in presenting their children good learning activities and ensuring that the transition to formal education is done with creativity in the schools.
Teachers and administrators are also called to task. They must rapidly adapt teaching methods and the environment of the classroom to make loans for these young children who use tablets. The change in attitude is key to success, as much as a desire to move away from a didactic model now more inclined towards a more collaborative and shared experience with students.
Lastly, public educational media firms like the TFO Media Group have a role to play in working with educators and supporting the practice innovative tools. We need to develop and gain learning content that benefit from the experience of tablet users.
The technology of digital tablets gives incredible opportunities to our children. Now, it is the time for the rest of us to recognize and grasp its potential.
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