The essay “Laptops in the Classroom? No Problem” by Elena Choy, states that banning laptops in the classroom in not the answer. I agree with Choy because with laptops in a classroom, students can access the internet and this is a great tool for research and also a means of communication by using tools like chats, e-mails and forums. With the arrival of the internet we were confronted with new possibilities, challenges and uncertainties in the process of learning and teaching.
How can students and teachers adapt to a learning process involving a technology that is becoming increasingly sophisticated, and more challenging? For me, teaching, in a broad context, is to select and organize information in order to transform it into knowledge. Laptops can facilitate individual and group research as well as the exchange of ideas between teachers, their colleagues and their students. Using laptops to access the internet provides students with an exchange of experiences, questions, materials, personal exchanges, both of whom are geographically near and far.
Laptops can help teachers to better prepare their class by expanding the ways to teach, to modify the evaluation process and communication with students and colleagues. Choy lists many factors in favor of banning laptops in the classroom: Let me try to give a reasoned statement of my position, a statement that will take account of the contrary position. In fact, I’ll begin with what I take to be the arguments in favor of banning laptops.
I believe the chief argument are these: (1) the upraised lids of laptops distract the instructor, and they often prevent the instructor from making eye contact with the students; (2) laptops distract other students, who cannot help but see what is on screens – for instance video games; (3) students who use laptops to take notes overly extensive notes, so they are doing stenography rather than thinking – rather, one might almost say, than paying real attention to the significant content of the course; (4) because they are so busy taking notes, laptops users tend not to participate in whatever discussion there may be in the course because they are too busy taking notes (Choy 272).
Teachers need to be prepared to use laptops and new technologies in the classroom, because this will increase the performance of students and overcome their difficulties and the idea to “Ban laptops chiefly comes not from students but from professors [because] they are disturbed by the lack of “eye-contact” (Choy 273). Working with paper and pencil with student in the 21st century creates conflicts and in some situations can lead the student and teacher to reflect on and question the pedagogical practices, enabling a change in attitude of the teacher. For me, I believe that the ideal learning environment is one in which subject and object is in constant change, allowing the construction of knowledge of both.
Currently there are several learning environments that are being developed and supported this interaction between the students and teachers like, and may be used both in classroom situations, so as to support all actions taken by teachers during the teaching process, as the record their difficulties, doubts, discussions, opinions, allowing them a constant construction and reconstruction of their actions and the teaching clues to its interventions. The technology used in school should be facing real problems and difficulties of the majority in order to improve the quality of education, linked to the objectives and principles of the “old school” ways of teaching.
Society is increasingly technological every day and it is necessary to reform the school and the education in order to educated the student to master the new language used by the computer as well as the need for the teacher to perfect these new techniques. Choy states that there will come a day that may jeopardize the future of the relationship between the professor and the student. I come to a dangerous point, I think that the chief reason instructors suggest that laptops be banned is one that they fear that most students who use laptops are not taking notes, but are engaged in activities unrelated to the course – instant messaging, e-mailing, shopping, palying poker and so on (Choy 274).
Unfortunately many teachers still do not know how to use the laptops; the first step is to learn how to do this because “if the instructor is so boring that that students use laptops to shop and to write letters, well when the laptops are banned the students will probably bring in crossword puzzles or exercises from other courses” (Choy 274) than something is wrong with the teacher. One must know what he can do, and then what to do with it. This does not mean that we know everything about laptops. First it is necessary to have certain knowledge with the most frequently used features such as the text editor, because the rest are learning a little bit every day.
Also, learn to send and receive emails and surf the internet to know are prerequisites for anyone who wants to use the laptop in the classroom and learn to integrate the laptops as part of their lesson, in this way they can engage the students and keep their attention. We must remember that the laptop in the classroom will not replace teachers; it will only help the student in several ways, transforming the classroom into a stimulating and attractive environment for students to develop their reasoning and creativity, thus contributing to helping them become autonomous learners. To make good use of the laptop in the classroom, the teacher must prepare and plan their activities with the students so that the result of this proposed work is achieved with this new technology.