I can’t believe where the time goes, it seems like only a moment has passed since Grace and I spent the weekend reviewing universities in London with a view to finally making the decision as to where she was going to spend a very important 3 years of her life. The time has simply flown from when she started school for the first time, and now already in her third year of university; coping with the challenges of the current restrictions in the UK and the impact on learning as a whole.
It was reflecting upon that visit to London recently that got us talking again about what really ‘pushed her buttons’. Grace is and was at school an academic but it is her now university course that has opened new dimensions which excite her so much more. Her recent work on radio, blog, pod cast reporting and producing a magazine, the latter with creative text and great graphics based upon reaching ethnic woman in society has been thrilling. Even though I say it myself the magazine is fabulous and a worthy addition to the university news stand.
As parents we all want to prepare our children for the ‘real world’ and make sure they receive the best possible education, advice and direction but we know that not all of us have academic children who relish the thought of examinations and paper based activities. Boring but critical I know, but there are other ways to encourage learning through much more hands on experiences.
Encouraging your child at an early age to develop a love of practical media studies could open up their educational lives from an early stage and encourage they love of learning to develop in a slightly different but still effective way, making a difference to their lives.
There are countless reasons why technology is a key aspect of learning. Whether we like it or not, technology is everywhere; and in order for our students to survive ‘lock downs’ or simply post-secondary education and the business world, they must know technology. The experience we have had educationally since March 2020 has proved we cannot do without it!
At MTA here in Mallorca we have been privileged over the years to open up new learning dimensions with students, those who are not natural academics but have a desire to learn through practical means. They have learnt through more hands on tutoring or technology based training linked to their creative side. This is a critical skill for their lives in the future. Technology has important effects on future business operations. No matter the size of the enterprise, technology has both tangible and intangible benefits that will help you make money and produce the results your customers demand. Therefore knowledge is power as they say!
I was very pleasantly surprised observing classes to see the technology students in discussions with their tutor; they were animated, full of ideas and not only understanding the technicalities of coding (again boring but critical) but how to present the pages to make the reader engaged, excited and want to get more information. It felt entrepreneurial and less like passive education.
For instance, most students at this age have not considered how to market effectively and so this is a great way to pull these skills together. It fascinated me how these students were talking about how to get their point or product across to the masses without any mention of not understanding marketing technicalities.
So why is learning through technology so important?
Engaging with Learning - As we know students are engaging with technology constantly outside of the classroom. They like to be interactive and learning through technology has now become a part of their lifestyle. Engaging with technology in the classroom not only helps them learn better, but they also acquire multi-tasking skills. It aides learning retention and that is vital for examination techniques and ongoing development.
This knowledge is important, for sure they will be way behind in the real world without it.
At MTA, we know from years of experience that students learn at their own pace, but sometimes the traditional classroom makes it difficult to do so. With the integration of technology in education children have the ability to slow down and go back over lessons and concepts, and more advanced student can go ahead.
For tutors it allows them to work on a more individual level with each child. The traditional passive learning model is broken. With technology in the classroom the teacher becomes the encourager, adviser, and coach.
Aiding Creativity – Technology empowers students to be more creative and I have been amazed at the way in which our students have developed skills I would never have thought of; developing core skills that traditional subjects require and that many students would find tiresome. For instance creative writing, developing English vocabulary and grammar.
Connecting the student with their learning style – Something I am always passionate about, integrating technology into the classroom is an effective way to connect with students of all learning styles. They begin to understand how they learn best and can apply these skills on a daily basis.
Students have access to an incredible amount of new opportunities. From learning how to code, to learning how to better collaborate across teams and with their tutors.
We know that tomorrow’s jobs and economy are going to be created by the leaders and entrepreneurs we foster today. Whether we like it or not, technology is an essential concept to learn and integrate into that world. Not every child will be an entrepreneur when he or she grows up, but we can inspire every child to have an entrepreneurial spirit, to lead confidently, think critically and creatively, be financially responsible, understand the value of teamwork and more importantly to develop skills that match the challenges of their adult life.
Because it changes so quickly, children are better off learning about it sooner. It is a primary part of every industry, and there is no way around it. These days, technology means more than just learning basic computing skills.
Technology has made itself part of every aspect of our lives today, and the students who understand it are the ones who succeed in the business world.
Believe in inspiring children to do extraordinary things.