Thursday, December 1, 2011

Profes recharge batteries for mobile learning

A new school year began and with it the unique challenges of education and everyday as the use of new information technologies and communication in the classroom.

But the challenge comes with the added value is that the use of ICT is no longer limited to the computer connected to the Internet, because they are already available to other technological tools that can complement learning, such as mobile devices.

And is that the headache issue for many teachers means class while students are distracted by your cell phone or music player, will in the near future an opportunity to be part of what is known as m-learning or mobile learning.

It is understood then the m-learning as learning that uses mobile devices such as cell phones, PDAs, tables, ipod, and all handheld devices easily with wireless connectivity. 

Rene Cruz Flores, professor at the Institute of Engineering of the Universidad Autonoma de Baja California said in his presentation "mobile devices in education: the future of learning" that the m-learning began as an aggregate of online learning (e-learning ): "looking through the phone that I could connect to the Internet and the resources wirelessly wherever she was and when I want."

However, those first strokes were confined to, to allow access from a mobile device and replicate them with information already available on other platforms.

Today, according to René Flores Cruz, there are several projects in countries like England, Germany and Japan, which advanced in this regard, and have dared to create new models and new teaching materials exclusively for mobile tools.

Thus, many students around the world and know not only what is to obtain their qualifications through the cell, but what is to bring their classes, lessons and assessments in English, mathematics or social science anywhere and anytime you want . 

A challenge for teachers today

That is what mobile learning for teachers in Medellin, because if either is just something that you're talking education in various areas of the city, it requires prompt attention to who will face this new conception education and who in turn should be familiar to learners.

As said Ramon Cruz Flores, classes may not be the same and teachers should devise other ways of imparting knowledge, because with these tools, it is possible for example that for natural science classes is not required and chalk board, but to bring mobile devices to the botanical gardens and see first hand the object of study. It is a dynamic in which students can explore and deepen knowledge at will, without being in the classroom, but always important to the accompaniment of educators.

And is that going further, Ramon Flores Cruz to imagine classes is reached where a student's absence will not justify that he is not attentive to the lessons or not present their assessments of written or oral ... all through a mobile device . 

Prevention before cure
Each day students and the community at large are more familiar with mobile devices, so that their arrival to education may be a matter of waiting.

This is an excuse for teachers and directors from and to raise and discuss this issue, thus making this new relationship between ICT and education do not take them by surprise. This issue will then be on the agenda.

This discussion should focus on what the educational objective that justifies the inclusion of mobile devices in the classroom and what software and technological tools needed to carry out this purpose. 

It's time to talk in the classroom

The advent of mobile devices to education and their possible use in the classroom in Medellín, is a suitable excuse to reflect with students and parents about the use of these technological tools. Attention to the following recommendations:

- What mobile devices are the students? Open space for students to tell you what kind of mobile devices used, which are so important in your life, what educational and recreational activities and how much they are required to spend their free time to use them.

- Are the students ready for mobile learning? Tell students about the possibility that future cell phones will become part important classes imagine how the tests? What difficulties have?

- Fear of technology? We are in the information society, so that technology makes important part of everyday life. Fear could pose a problem for students. Ask them about their fears and familiarize with ICT, including mobile devices.

- There was a phone in class? The misuse of mobile devices is a constant in today's society, so we have to instill in students the need to respect the spaces. It is wrong that in a class at a dinner or a play, people use the Blackberry chat or make use of other mobile service.

- One thing at a time. Talk to parents about the importance of students acquiring mobile devices according to their age and social needs and the need for parents to monitor and guide the proper use of these tools.

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