“Technology Tuesdays”

Homework as Meaningful: “T if or Technology

Homework: the pros and cons … a hotly debated topic among teachers and parents.
I actually believe in homework (see http://bit.ly/qMSR5X) as a means of encouraging the development of organizational skills and good study habits, for example.
So I found myself thinking about ways in which to ensure that homework assignments are meaningful; that they engage and extend students’ understanding of concepts presented in class.
…. Then I got to thinking: My students really(!) enjoy playing math games on the smart board, going on virtual field trips, etc. They log onto and play computer games, watch videos, etc. all the time … so why not combine the two? Why not combined educational computer games, virtual field trips, videos etc. with homework?
The next day I decided to put my idea to the test … I called my idea:

“Technology Tuesdays”.

The idea is this:
   Every Tuesday my students’ homework is now on the computer.
Last week for example they played a multiplication game (http://bit.ly/xczDzl), practiced long division (http://bit.ly/1Fp79E) and went on a tomb adventure in ancient Egypt (http://bit.ly/wQxVhw). The week before that they contributed to our Egypt Game Blog (that I had created and previous to this they had only used at school), played a division concentration game and watched a Study Jams video followed by an online quiz all about fractions (http://bit.ly/ArmkJB).
   The students loved it, as did the parents! So now (as of last week) I have extended Technology Tuesdays to “T is for Technology”. Homework is now done on the computer on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Note:
When I asked my students why they love “Technology Tuesdays they listed many reasons, including the following:

1.    “The games are fun and the videos are interesting.”
2.     “Working on the computer gives me a break from using a pencil and paper. It gives my hands a rest.”
3.    “Virtual field trips are great because I can visit places that I have never been before. I loved going inside a pyramid! It was dark and cool with secret passages. I liked going inside a museum and seeing artifacts. I loved seeing what everything looks like in “real life”. We can “go to” places that we have never been before.”
4.    “The games and videos guide me so I can do things on my own. I didn’t have to ask for help with long division.”
5.    “I use less paper, which saves trees. “T for Technology” is eco-friendly.”

Yay! We love “T is for Technology”!

Cheers,
Ally


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4 responses to ““Technology Tuesdays”

  1. This is an excellent way to get students to enjoy doing some homework. Just wondering about the ones with no access at home. I have a handful in each of my classes that do not have Internet access from home. How are you handling this?

    Thanks for sharing and I am definitely borrowing this idea. T is for Technology will be math homework on Tuesdays and Thursdays for us too.

  2. Do you have any students without Internet access? How do you deal with that?

  3. Hi Erin,
    All of my students have access.
    I am very lucky … as are they ;-)
    Cheers,
    Alison

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