Technology trains your brains

technology opens horizonsI am sure someone is doing research somewhere to prove than technology use improves your brain function. Students born in 2000 and after are different. They know a lot. They can absorb information very quickly. They make connections fast. My job as a teacher with those students is to access all that information in their brains and make it go to work in the name of real knowledge and education. I actually taught my year 9s yesterday some French grammar I had taught the year 11s the week before. The reason I did it was when I was marking their work I could see the year 9s wanted to make more complex sentences and normally I don’t try that until year 10. I could see what they were all trying to do in that batch of work. We practiced our big numbers and then I just said to them I was going to try something and that I had, in fact ,taught them modal verbs last term and they even knew what that meant, and that I would see how they went and they shouldn’t worry if it seemed hard because it was. It was year 11. I got silence. Some scrambled for their  pencils. Their iPads were under their chairs. I did my 5 minutes explaining but at every step I asked if they got it. Their faces were intent. They were looking at one bit and then the other bit and I could seem them trying to make connections. It’s easier when I do my daft drawings. My students seem to enjoy my lack of capacity to draw as I talk and they learn that way…visual, some text and voice overs!!! These students have grown up with technology. I only ever teach like that for a maximum of 10 minutes. Technology means I can create custom lessons, access what I need very quickly, create depth or amusement in an instant. I can see these younger students want to know. They ask intelligent questions. They do not switch off from knowledge and they don’t worry if they are baffled. The internet baffles them on a regular basis. Games baffle them at every level. They have no fear of not knowing because they also know you can level up or you can access someone on a site which will explain all. Next semester in year 9 I am going to have baffle your brain sessions of 10 minutes every week and see what happens. We are really going to hurt our heads with learning at a higher level. Having something which you cannot do easily, cannot understand easily forces your passive knowledge to become active. That’s my belief and this is my plan.

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