One great benefit of technology is the ability to teach kids how to code. Here are seven apps provided by Edutopia that are helping kids digitally. These apps are either meant for classrooms (e.g. there are multiple student accounts on one app) or for home.
In such a growing digital world, should coding be integrated into the classroom? Is it necessary or should it be determined later based on what the child ends up studying?
A study conducted by the Pew Research Center has shown that teachers like what technology is bringing to the classroom, but they are concerned about how it affects writing. While many students feel more comfortable writing digitally and those students feel like they are able to be more creative when writing digitally, teachers are concerned that it might be hindering their students’ writing. In this digital world, kids are able to tweet things in 140 characters or less. That means they use shortcuts and don’t have time to fully explain things. That might be affecting the writing process when it comes to the classroom.
“Students now because of technology have the ability to feel a lot more flexible about what they write, to take more creative risks with what they write and to make more attempts,” said Jennifer Barbknecht, an English language arts teacher at Berkner High School in Richardson (Kera News).
The concept of children’s creativity blossoming through technology has been researched and explained academically in studies such as Creativity in Technology Education: Providing Children with Glimpses of their Innovative Potential.
Technology does not only help with learning assistance. It has many outlets to open up creativity. According to The Modern Parent, “Kids are making new content, reworking old content and coming up with new and more creative ideas to get a message across, express an idea or connect with others. There is much that can be encouraged by allowing our children this freedom to create.”
Some of this is found on social media, but kids are also able to have blogs where they curate information or ideas. They can build digital worlds in games such as Minecraft or Sims. They can develop identities online.
Technology in the classroom is not just for typically developing kids. Children with special needs can not only use technology, but it has been proven helpful for their development. The “10 Best Autism Apps for the iPad” give examples such as First Then Visual Schedule HD, which allows the child to follow their routine in a visual way. There is also an ABA Flash Cards app which shows common pictures and words studied in Applied Behavioral Analysis, a therapy used to help children on the Autism spectrum with cognitive development.
The following video is a clip from 60 Minutes regarding Apps for Autism.