Gone are the days of sticking to books and chalkboards in the classroom. The Internet has opened up a world of resources that teachers can use to supplement their lesson plans.
When students need to research something, whether for a report, project, or simply to participate in a discussion, the Internet provides a ready research platform. Sites like Ask for Kids and KOL make it easy for students to find the information they need, when they need it. However, Internet research isn’t just for kids. Sites like Discovery Education are great places for teachers to find information and ideas as well.
The Internet is a powerful communication tool. Studying a particular part of the world? Students can write to email pals in that area to learn about cultural differences and maybe even make long-distance friends. Epalsis a site that facilitates student email conversations.
For Multisensory Learning
Videos, animations, and audio clips provide a good way to reinforce information learned via more traditional means. For example, students may benefit from seeing a video presentation about the mummification process or from seeing some of the marine life found in the Amazon River. Listening to a famous speech may be more exciting than simply reading it, and full-color animations may help illustrate concepts better than whiteboard drawings in some cases.
There’s something to be said for resources that combine fun with learning. Many students will enthusiastically approach math practice that is presented in a gaming format. They also tend to enjoy interactive quizzes and similar resources that allow them to forget they’re actually working. While these resources won’t replace traditional practice, they can go hand in hand with it to bolster a better understanding.
Think of all you can do with a class website. Students can showcase their work and display projects completed as a group. Planning for a special guest to visit the classroom? The teacher can introduce the guest and provide a little background to prepare the class. This website can even be used to post newsletters and calendars–perfect for keeping parents up to date on classroom happenings.
For Learning at a Different Pace
The Internet can also be good for providing individual reading assignments, projects, and research to students. This may come in handy when a particular student is ready to move on to a new topic before the rest of the class or when a student needs a little extra time to spend on a topic before moving on to the next subject.
To See the World
Field trips are a great way to learn, but it’s impossible to travel to all the places students might enjoy. This is where online field trips can help. With an Internet connection, students can travel the world and see everything from the pyramids to the Louvre Museum, without leaving the classroom!
What else can you find on the Internet?
- Lesson Plans
- Facts and Figures
- Updated Information
- Collaborative Internet Projects
How do you integrate technology in the classroom? We’d love to hear your comments and suggestions below!