Improving education has always been on the spotlight. One thing we can be sure of is that technology has changed the way education operates. Educational Technology, or EdTech, for short, changed education as we know it so far.
EdTech refers to the facilitation of learning and teaching processes through the use of technological resources. Research has shown that technology can increase the effectiveness of education by reducing, for example, the cognitive load on teachers through automating processes.
While technology can help all kinds of teachers, it can be extremely useful for those who teach English. In this post I’ll focus on 3 ways English teachers can use technology to help their students thrive.
Technology offers many opportunities for teacher to make their assignments more interesting and fun for their students. Not only does this lead to the best absorption of knowledge and information by students, but it also create a better relationship between teachers and students. With technology, teachers can encourage their students to explore English through the things that they are interested in.
The term “creative assignment” might seem very broad, however, examples of it would be creating interactive tests to check students’ English, or creating videos, infographics or even GIF’s. This will help students stay focused and interested on the learning goals.
Gamification through language apps:
Considering today’s digital environment, gamification has become very popular in education in order to increase engagement, motivation, and reinforce the learning process.
Technology has given the opportunity to many companies develop applications with the goal of learning a new language. Tools for learning English are becoming more popular, as it is a fun and interesting way to proceed with the process. Applications like KnowbleReader, Duolingo, FluentU and many more offer to people a lot of material that can be accessed instantly, just by downloading the application. It has become a popular way of learning as well, as the costs included are minimal, or in some cases are even completely eliminated.
The initial idea behind those applications, is that learning English (or a new language in general) might take years and requires effort. These tools aim to decrease the need for expensive resources and make the experience more appealing and entertaining. Most of the times students think that learning English is boring and time consuming. Through those tools, this belief changes and instead students become more willing to dedicate their time to learn a new language.
Hence, using these tools, education can be transformed into a more appealing process from the perspective of students. But also, this will lead to more efficient teaching, and thus the results of students improving will improve expeditiously.
“Personalized learning is the fast- emerging face of education that is changing traditional approaches to how we educate young minds by tailoring the content and intensity of study to an individuals’ student needs, abilities and goals.”
For some people the term might not sound familiar at all, and for other as a time consuming process. What we need to do is focus on the benefits that it has to offer.
When the lessons are created on the personal needs of students, then it makes sense that the level of efficiency will be higher.. Additionally, teachers are able to have access to student’s insights so their teaching methods can become more effective. Adding on that, with technology integrated in the teaching process, it will reduce the teachers’ workload, eliminating manual grading and administrative tasks. This will eventually lead to a better structure of education and a system that will be more efficient.
Personalised learning aims to cut down wasted time, as the material delivered to students is relevant to them and adjusted to their level of English. Students have the option of choosing where, how, and when they learn, and therefore, boost their will of learning English and teachers can create a trustworthy and loyal relationship. This will ultimately create a more engaged student group as the learners become more personally invested in the learning process.
Learning English is not an easy process but...
In the end, teaching English can be difficult and complicated. Every situation can be different, and it largely depends on the students and circumstances. There are many variables which need to be taken into consideration, like the developments of technology, which can have a major impact on the outcomes.
By using tools like apps like KnowbleReader or Duolingo teaching English becomes an adventurous and enjoyable process. A process that turns to be interesting not just for teachers but for the students as well. Good luck in your English teaching journey, and remember that sometimes patience is the most valuable asset.