Evolution of Tech in the Classroom
Whether you finished your educational journey five or thirty years ago, classroom learning is not how you remember it! Chalkboards, overhead projectors, and hand written papers are no longer commonalities found in the classroom. While these things still exist in classrooms across the country, they are rare.
In 2015, we live in a world where smartphones, tablets, personal laptops and Wi-Fi consume our technology-obsessed society; a world where now, technology and education go hand-in-hand.
Starting with the end of the 19th century, here are 10 of the most significant technological advancements made that forever changed education:
1890: The Chalkboard
As one of the most iconic staples of a classroom, the chalkboard is still used today. While many schools have moved to dry-erase boards and interactive white boards, it is nice to know they still exist — especially in math classrooms, where the ability to erase comes in handy!
1960: The Overhead Projector
While this invention was originally intended for use by the US military during WWII, projectors started appearing in classrooms providing teachers with a much easier tool for sharing notes, or a visual, simultaneously on a big screen.
1970: The Handheld Calculator
This invention gave students a convenient and easy way to solve math problems, right in the palm of their hand. Teachers, however, feared these devices would prevent students from learning the most basic of skills. Fast forward to 1985 when the graphing calculator was introduced, truly giving students a much easier way to survive math class.
1972: The Scantron
The most helpful grading tool for teachers in terms of efficiency and convenience became known as the Scantron. Multiple-choice exams could now be graded by a machine instead of by hand.
1977: Desktop Computer
The late 1970s was welcomed by the advent of the Apple II computer, and by the ’80s, personal computers were introduced. Students could now learn math and geography from computer games like “The Oregon Trail”, and “Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?”
1985: CD-ROM Drive
Saving documents onto a disk that could be moved from one computer to another paved the way for easy personal storage and flash drives.
It’s hard to imagine life without the Internet. Yet, it’s hardly been 20 years since this once obscure network was introduced to homes and schools and changed the world forever.
1999: Interactive Whiteboard
With a touch-sensitive screen, teachers now had the ability to stand in the front of the classroom and control his/her computer desktop without actually sitting at their desk.
Offering free instructional videos to teachers and students worldwide, YouTube continues to change the educational world.
2010 — Today: iPads, Personal Laptops & Educational Apps
With technology changing everyday, you never know what’s coming next! We live in a world where students of all ages have easy access to a computer or tablet of some sort at home and in the classroom. Physical textbooks are disappearing from classrooms as eTextbooks are taking over. Notebooks, pencils, and pens, are no longer a necessity as papers can be typed and emailed to teachers. And, lastly, interactive mobile apps are now being used to teach students at any educational level without the need of a physical lesson plan.
With all this said, there’s one question that begs to be answered: Will there come a time when teachers cease to exist in the classroom? With Google, YouTube, and online courses available to students, this idea may eventually become a reality. We’ll just have to wait and see!
Originally published at www.liqui-site.com on November 13, 2015.