Teaching Tools – Making Subjects Relevant

As technology has improved, so have the teaching tools available in classrooms. Some of these tools have even replaced more traditional ones. Is important for a teacher to remember that a teaching tool is not a replacement for instruction but rather an instrument to help facilitate the communication of knowledge and information. The tools that a teacher is choosing should match the abilities of the teacher and the students. An instrument or device that is overly complicated may have a negative effect in the classroom, becoming a distraction rather than complementing the source material. Tools can play a crucial role in helping students to gain a better understanding of the world around them.

Traditional tools like pencils, paper, and books are not likely to be replaced anytime soon by a technologically advanced equivalent. Teachers have been using a variety of tools in certain subjects for decades. For instance, a science class would not be the same without a microscope, test tubes, or Bunsen burners. These are very practical devices that can help a student better understand the subject being taught. Overhead projectors have also long been a favorite of teachers for a variety of different types of curriculum.

Modern technology has put a wealth of information at the fingertips of just about every student. The use of computers and the Internet can be an excellent way to get students involved and engaged in a subject. However, it is important for teachers not to rely too heavily on these devices since they can get in the way of a student learning basic skills. For instance, a calculator is not a replacement for basic math skills. Likewise, automatic spelling and grammar check software should not take the place of a student’s ability to master good spelling, punctuation and grammar.

Teaching tools like software programs can help a student to take a hands-on approach and learn actively rather than passively. Regardless of the type of device being used, there really is no substitute for an involved and caring teacher. In truth, teaching tools are where ever an educator finds them. Encouraging students to bring an item from home is one way for students to find their own teaching tools. Anything that helps a student further their knowledge of a particular subject is a tool that teachers can utilize to provide a positive experience. Finding ways to make the curriculum relevant to today’s students is every bit as important as it ever was, but now there are more options than ever available.

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