ICT in Elementary Education: Benefits and Tools
ICT in elementary education is fundamental, as it allows children to search for the information they need and organize what they’ve found. Moreover, children with computer literacy at an early stage of their lives can cope better with the modern world.
ICT–Information and Communication Technology–can be defined as the set of tools used in the processing and transmission of information quickly and efficiently by a large number of people. All of this regardless of the distance that separates them.
As children progress through the school system, they become more responsible for their own learning. So many experts believe that ICT should therefore be integrated into the curriculum. The aim is for all schools to produce computer literate and independent students.
Brief historical review on the use of ICT in primary education
In 1985, the first institutional project to integrate ICT in the classroom was launched: The Atenea Project. Together with it, the Mercurio project for the introduction of computer and audiovisual media in the curriculum was launched. Its development took place with the appearance of the personal computer.
The second stage arrived in 1995. It’s a stage linked to the appearance of the Internet. From that moment on, plans for the introduction of ICT in education have state and autonomous community components.
At present, the aim is to make broadband Internet access available in all schools. The implementation is being carried out little by little and is also aimed at making no distinction between geographical areas.
Benefits of the use of ICT in the classroom
ICT features such as their flexibility in interactivity, the ability to distribute information flows, and virtuality are so important that it’s practically impossible to think of a primary school education without such technological tools (Begoña Gros and David Contreras, 2006).
The use of ICT in education is a key point for improving the results of the teaching-learning process. We only have to look at constructivist theories. They’re tools that allow both teachers and students to obtain great benefits from their use.
They also allow students to explore, observe, solve problems, and discover things for themselves. The use of ICT also stimulates interaction among peers and among teachers.
Therefore, it extends the learning experience, i.e., it raises standards across the curriculum by improving the delivery of lesson content. It certainly enables students to participate in class in many and varied ways.
It creates boundaryless learning that goes beyond the four walls of the classroom. ICT makes education work anytime, anywhere. Students and teachers can continue to access resources even from home.
Also, its use enriches the curriculum by facilitating access to a wealth of information. Therefore, it expands the boundaries of learning. In addition, fast connections allow learning materials to be both viewed, downloaded, and worked on quickly.
Appropriate ICT in elementary education
In terms of education, specific services have been created for ICT educational intervention. They are, above all, very useful technological tools for learning and reinforcing content in the classroom and outside of it.
We can mention some examples:
- Specific portals of official, state, or regional organizations.
- Creation tools and supports. For example, interactive whiteboards or e-notebooks.
- Online learning material provided by textbook publishers.
- The intranet (internal computer networks with a structure similar to the Internet).
- Educational games: the student learns in a playful way.
Many studies show that student motivation increases with the use of ICT. In fact, this use leads to an educational transformation in classroom methodology.
We conclude by recalling that ICT has a positive and direct impact on the current educational environment, as this environment is immersed in the information society. The .com generation assimilates the use of technological tools in a natural way, therefore, we must use this to take advantage of the benefits that ICTs bring to education.It might interest you...