MCS Digital Leaders: How Technology Makes Me A Better Student

I have been surrounded by technology for as long as I can remember. In fact, everything I do in my life is based around technology.  
Back in elementary school, I would learn by using writing projectors. In junior high, technology advanced in my school through the use of active boards, and now that I'm in high school - we have 1:1 ThinkPad laptops. We use these laptops for writing essays, research, and also interacting with online resources.
But how can these objects of technology that I have used throughout my elementary years and now secondary years help make me a better student? 
Currently, I believe that my laptop is a tool that makes me a better student through its ability to help me produce my school work digitally. This device connects me with my school's learning management system, My Big Campus. This LMS helps me interact with my teachers virtually and it helps me stay organized by turning in my projects and assignments online. With My Big Campus, I can take quizzes, learn new content, explore and research, pose questions, and I can collaborate with my peers at my high school and peers throughout the world. This technology makes me a better student in the sense that I have the ability to be a global citizen and learner.  

Posted by Haley Jansen, Freshman, Madison Consolidated High School

Does Technology Make You a Better Student?  A Middle School Perspective
Does technology make you a better student? Across the country schools are replacing pencil and paper for laptops. So we asked students and teachers at our school what they thought. Out of a total of 22 students 64% said yes, and 36% said no. For teachers 50% said yes and 50% said no. It’s a varying topic with multiple answers. We say yes, because it makes work easier, and keeps your files so you don’t lose them as often. On the other hand, we say no because what really makes you a better student is your attitude.

Technology has some pros and cons. Prior to technology school was confusing with all the papers, text books, pencils. All of those loose papers made it hard to keep track of our work. Students can use their laptops as a file cabinet, an information resource, an agenda, and a student and teacher communication device. So which side are you on?
By:  Laken Shepherd and Alyson Harlan
East Noble Middle School Students

East Noble--Technology as a Tool...not Life Support

I think that technology can provide students with the necessary resources to maximize their potential, but only if students can learn to use technology as a tool, not life support. There are plenty of programs and websites that can help students learn in a way that best suits them. When I don’t understand a concept in class, I research it on the internet until I understand what it is. I also use my computer to take legible notes that I can actually read later on. I use my laptop as a calendar and agenda for upcoming assignments and events. I use my laptop to talk to teachers after school.
There are plenty of good things about technology, but it is not always properly used by teenagers. When I am in class and lose interest in the topic we’re learning about, I find it extremely hard to not look up funny pictures or play games on the internet. If I do this, I run the risk of missing important details for lessons and assignments. If that happens, I might do an assignment incorrectly and my grades could drop as a consequence. The same problem arises when I go home. Why would I want to do my Statistics assignment when I could watch movie trailers on YouTube? It turns into: Oh, I’ll just watch a couple of videos then do my homework. Oh wait, is that a new music from my favorite band? Hey, I should catch up on the new videos from my subscriptions while I’m here…then BAM! It’s eleven o’clock at night and I’ve made no progress on my homework.

It’s also an issue when you have down time. You could end up spending hour after hour messing around on the internet when you could have gone outside and spent time getting some fresh air, or reading a book, or a reading a book in the fresh air. The benefits of technology are limitless, but the negatives have a way of overpowering them at times.

However, despite all of the negatives that can come with technology, once you learn to harness it and use to your full advantage, you can become a creative, efficient, and hard-working student with plenty of focus and skills. It all depends on whether or not a student is willing to do that.

Written by Lydia Waring
East Noble High School Senior

Southmont - Our Favorite Piece of Technology

The Southmont IMAC group is privileged to have MacBooks to create our digital citizenship curriculum for the students. Through our MacBooks we have utilized the iBooks Author program and learned various features to make our books more creative and engaging for students of all ages. We use our MacBooks for creating the resources, such as iMovies, that we feature as content in our iBooks. Our MacBooks allow us to keep all of our resources and curriculum together in one organized place. Since these are for our personal use we are allowed to take them home to work on our projects outside of school. This is helpful since we don't have a class to meet with throughout the week.

Having these MacBooks is an enormous blessing and we are grateful to be provided with them. We rely on them since they hold all of our work and provide creative functions to create future curriculum. We wouldn't be able to work as efficiently, creatively or be as organized as we are without them! Our MacBooks are our favorite piece of technology! 

Submitted by Kelly Tucker

How Technology Makes Us Better Students

Technology has always played a central role in education. Ever since the advent of schooling, both instructors and their students have been doing their best to utilize the technology available to make teaching and learning as easy as possible. From the printing press to the mechanical pencil, new technologies have been integrated into education in order to make everyone’s lives simpler. The modern digital technology of iPads, given to all students at Southmont, are the latest innovation that allow modern students to learn more thoroughly and effectively than ever before.

The many advantages of using iPads for education are easily apparent. Replacing physical resources with digital ones helps with organization and paper costs. Instead of juggling several different folders, notebooks, and binders to each class, students can have all of their necessary materials in one place. Taking notes, writing essays, and turning in assignments through the iPad not only saves paper, but is easier to manage and organize than more traditional methods. As an added bonus for those with poor handwriting (and teachers who attempt to read it), typed assignments are much easier on the eyes and most people can type more quickly than they write.

Modern technology provides the best way for students to be actively engaged in their learning and to make the most of their academic potential. The Apple App Store has thousands of apps offered for education, and engaged students will use them to their advantage. For example, various note-taking apps exist that create possibilities not available with a traditional pen and paper approach, such as automatically calculating math problems or linking documents to the notes page. There are also several apps that provide ways for teachers to assign and remind students of homework that needs to be done.  For technology-savvy teachers and students, our technology can be used to simplify and streamline interaction for maximum ease, convenience, and effectiveness.

As long as there has been education, technology has been used to ease the job of teaching and learning. In the present day, providing modern devices can make modern schools more engaging. Students and teachers looking to maximize their potential will find countless ways to use technology to do so. Modern technology can make better students, teachers, and schools.

Submitted by Aaron Cox