Technologies for education, programming and Virtual Platform
Making use of Information and Communication Technologies improves the learning process
The use of information and communication technologies (known as ICT) such as Internet pages, CD-Roms, and videos; in addition to various computer programs and applications, have caused many changes in our society, not only in the technical sense, but also the structural one. Many institutions have changed to keep up with these technologies, and therefore, have affected our daily lives. However, the impact of these technological advances in education is only beginning to be felt in the classroom, as teachers integrate these tools into their lessons; and consequently, the way in which education is given has started a process of change in recent decades.
ICT can improve the learning process by enhancing existing didactic knowledge, as well as introducing new ways of teaching and learning. Children who have been born in our current society need to develop sufficient potential and skills to be able to fully utilize the advantages provided by the new opportunities offered by ICT; as they can improve the quality of both teaching and learning in schools, and help students achieve better academic results.
There are many studies that have proven that the new technologies offer a number of benefits for students. ICTs allow a higher quality of lessons when used in conjunction with teachers in the process of planning and preparing resources (Ofsted, 2002). Students also learn new skills, such as analytics, which include improvements in reading comprehension (Lewin et al, 2000), and basic programming. ICT also develop writing skills in the area of spelling, grammar, punctuation, editing, and writing (Lewin et al, 2000). Furthermore, new technologies encourage independent and active learning in students; as well as a sense of responsibility for their own learning (Passey, 1999).
ICTs prove that students who use technologies for education feel more successful in school, in addition to improving their self-esteem and self-confidence. Many of the students, subjected to studies by various academics, feel that learning done in environments that are enhanced by the use of technology is much more challenging and better than learning done in a traditional classroom (Pedretti and Mayer-Smith 1998).
The use of ICT has changed teaching in many ways. With ICT, teachers are able to create their own materials, and therefore have much more control over the material used in the classroom than they previously had. The use of technologies in the classroom has made teachers have to be more creative to create their own teaching materials, and make it interesting for their students. In addition, the use of Web pages to enhance classroom activities can be used to complement other aspects of the teaching process, rather than replace teachers entirely. It is clear that involving students in creating classroom materials can be used as part of the learning exercise in a way that makes school more meaningful to them.