pe July 2013

Education & Tech

mLearning, highered, research, academia

Education + Tech

Education & Tech, was created to build hope that education based on social technologies, can transform the new century, and enable abundance not only spiritually but economically. Milton L. Ramirez, Ed.D. - @tonnet is the founder & editor. He is an instructor with UoPeople, is a blogger, writes on education, and hails this blog from Union, NJ. For further questions, tips or concerns please e-mail him to:miltonramirez [at] educationandtech [dot] com

Teacher + Scholar

If you are a regular to Blog Education & Tech, you shall remember that I am blogging and I'd written articles about education and technology almost every day since 2003. In the gazillion of notes, Education & Tech provides you with education news, tech advice, classroom management ideas, and social media tools for educators, administrators, parents and k-12 students.

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Improving the Methods of Your Technology in the Classroom

By Ken Myers*

There are many times when a school district or the principal of your school will hand you a piece of technology and expect you to implement it within the classroom. Often, these items are given to you without knowledge of how to use them. Depending on the form of this technology, you can use basic features in order to "muddle around" to provide some form of education. However, it may take more than that to use the equipment to its fullest capabilities.

1. Know Your Devices - By understanding what the device can do, you can accomplish a great deal more both on an intellectual level and some entertainment value. For instance, a computer in your classroom for the students can be far more than simply a testing tool and access to the internet. While some teachers are reluctant to research technological tools they have in the classroom, it would be in their best interest to do so.

2. Research What it Can Do - Google and other search engines can provide you with a wealth of information on the tools you have. While college courses in computer sciences could help you understand your systems better, the Internet is rich with free information that can guide you to develop innovative ways to utilize the technology for the student's benefit. In fact, there is a good chance that your IT personnel 'Google' a variety of problems on a daily basis.

3. They Are More than You Realize - Tablets are slowly being introduced into classrooms across the country. However, many districts are slow to provide adequate knowledge to staff about what these devices can accomplish. They don't have to be the social media browsing, game playing, Internet browsers that many think they are. Many IT professionals will use them as tools for network troubleshooting. Books are available for distribution to tablets for educational material. If you're inclined to try, you can research how to build your own apps for free to provide even further functionality tailored to your classroom's exact needs. All of the tools you would need can be installed and a variety of online tutorials are available to you.

4. Attend or Suggest Sponsored IT Functions - While some school districts will offer technological classes sponsored by the very IT department that governs them, many do not. Regardless of the reasons behind why this isn't a mandatory function, it would be in your best interest to attend or suggest these courses to improve how your classroom technology functions. These courses can be everything from preventative maintenance to innovative ways to use the technology. Contrary to the belief of many teachers, the Promethean Board and other smart boards are more than a large surface to show movies on.

5. Learn Every Function - Every piece of software that is installed for you to use by the IT staff should be learned upon. For instance, there is a piece of software called Vision. With this program, you can monitor the student activity on the Internet by watching what they are doing. You can also make the student's monitor black, lock the keyboard, disable the mouse, disable USB ports, and a slew of other functions. However, many teachers do not spend the time to learn what the software can do.

Technology isn't something that should be feared, but it should be embraced. Although some will argue that technological gizmos take away from the learning experience, these devices can engage the children in a way that can help them learn more efficiently. Ask your IT department of what your devices are capable of in a classroom environment and develop methods to improve education.

(*) Ken Myers is the founder of & has learned over the years the importance of focusing on what the customer is looking for and literally serving it to them. He doesn’t try to create a need, instead he tries to satisfy the existing demand for information on products and services.

How Do You Know When a Nation's Education Policy Has Gone Awry? - U.S. Case

The Badass Teachers Association - BAT has been created to give voice to every teacher who refuses to be blamed for the failure of our society to erase poverty and inequality through education.

Founders Priscilla Sanstead, Dr. Mark Naison, and Marla Kilfoye, claim this Facebook group tries to reduce or eliminate the use of high stakes testing, increase teacher autonomy in the classroom and work to include teacher and family voices in legislative decision-making processes that affect students.

There are some who feel it is offensive or unprofessional to use the word badass and are uncomfortable with its use. The group disagrees. As Dr. Naison states: "We've had enough. We are not your doormats. We are not your punching bags. We are some of the hardest working, most idealistic people in this country and we are not going to take it anymore.

We are going to stand up for ourselves and stand up for our students even if no organization really supports us, continues Naison. "We are Badass. We are legion. And we will force the nation to hear our voice!"

Dr Mark Naison, is a Professor of African American Studies and History at Fordham University. He has posted a question which to some might sound funny, but it is certainly truth.

How do you know when a nation's education policy has gone awry?

1. When the two most powerful men shaping education policy in the country- Bill Gates and Arne Duncan, haven't taught a day in their live.

2. When a celebrated organization called "Teach for America" trains talented students to LEAVE teaching after two years to shape education policy.

3. When leaders of both major parties take turns bashing teachers and deluging their classrooms with tests and assessments.

After answering the question, Mr. Naison ask other teachers to join BAT. "No justice. No peace," he writes.

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Milton Ramirez

3 Ways That Technology Can Be Helpful in Education

By Sasha Roiz*

We are living in a world that is full of gadgets and its usage is increasing day by day. Technology has made the world a global village and shrunk the distances among the people. No need to mention the comforts that it has added to an ordinary man’s life. Along with it, technology has made remarkable easiness in the lives of students. Studying in today’s world has become easier as compared to the traditional ways of studying. Following are the top 3 ways that will assist you in understanding that how it is helping you to study easily.

1. Easy To Research

Suppose you have to submit a report or research paper on such topic that is not known to you. Abiding by the traditional way, you will go to your school’s or college’s library to find the material on it. Unfortunately, your library has no informative books or the books on that particular topic are outdated. Now what else can you do? You can search more libraries to find the material which is time and energy consuming process.

On the other hand, using the modern or technological way for researching the content can be much easier. All you have to do is to sit on your sofa comfortably and search for the topic through any of the well known search engine. There are many online libraries that have softcopy of almost every book. Some of them are free and some may cost you. However, the cost would be very low as compared to the price of hardcopy of it. In this way, you will get the coherent material and it will save you a lot of time and energy that can be devastated if you would have gone for the traditional researching.

2. Study Online

It is one of the biggest milestones and blessings of technology. Suppose you have to do some specialization from the particular institute that is in another city, state or country. If you would go for the traditional way, you will have to leave your family and go there. This transition of yours will be very costly because you would not be paying fees only. You have to pay for the food, rent and more similar things.

On the other hand, if you would go for the online classes, neither you will have to leave your family nor pay for the extra expenses. All you have to do is to get online for the timing slot that the institute has assigned you and take your class.

3. Online Guidance And Help

Suppose you are working on your assignment that you have to submit next day and get stuck in the middle of it. Following the traditional way, you can ask for the help from your fellows. What if they are unable to help you with it? What else you can do?

Thanks to the technology that there are many online portals and forums nowadays. Every forum is based on a particular topic. People over there are discussing and helping each other on that topic. You have to search for the forum that is relevant to your topic and post your thread over there. Within no time, you will be getting replies to your thread. In the end, you have to choose the most suitable answer among them.

(*)Sasha Roiz is an academic writer by profession with particular experience in the field of education and research, currently serving at EssayMall.Co.Uk as an academic consultant. She lives in Liverpool with her parents and two persian cats.
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