The Government have claimed that they are committed to spending £1billion on improving IT teaching within schools. However, it has been suggested that not a high enough percentage of this is actually being allocated to teacher training therefore leaving teachers lacking in the knowledge and understanding to confidently use the latest technology in an effective way.
6 out of 10 pupils, between the ages of 16-18, surveyed by Microsoft believe that they have better knowledge of IT than their IT teachers. It is also perceived that a large proportion of a students’ IT knowledge is acquired externally to the school environment. However there is some controversy as to whether this self-taught understanding of IT would be useful in the working environment as it is mainly geared around the understanding of social media sites and forum type IT.
Due to the generally aged equipment and out-dated teaching methods, students find IT lessons boring and un-stimulating. This is not helped by the fact that many students have more advanced computers and software sitting at home than what they have to use in the classroom.
With this in mind, teachers now have to become far more interesting in their teaching styles in order to engage with their students and prepare them for their imminent working life.
By encouraging group learning methods and incorporating hands on, practical IT tasks relevant to real life business situations, teachers can now engage in a far more positive and successful way. By doing this, students are having fun interacting with their friends and actually being part of the class but at the same time also learning valuable IT skills for the future.
But it is not just as simple as creating a fun environment. According to Ofsted, pupils are to be able to show independence in IT whilst having the ability to work jointly within a group scenario and possess confidence when carrying out IT related investigations.
The IT giant Microsoft supports the notion that there is an inconsistency between the requirements within a company and what is taught within schools.
An easy and cost effective way to combat this issue is to have available effective training programs for teachers. This is vital so that students can achieve the best quality of learning but also so that teachers are not out-witted by more knowledgeable students within the classroom environment.
There are many free training products available for teachers such as Adobe CS5 Student and Teacher Edition. Included in this training package is 24 hours’ worth of FREE training videos to aid with learning. With savings of up to 90% on genuine Adobe and Microsoft Software for teachers, it is easy to become a more capable and confident IT teacher, thus creating more capable and confident IT students.