Diana Comp shares some of her strategies for engaging primary students and growing understandings in technology.
Hooking primary students into technology
You don’t necessarily need to have a technology suite. We are lucky at our school that we do have a technology suite. But you can easily set up technology in your classroom just with a trolley full of "junk to funk" making equipment and a tool box.
I find that really successful with display boards. I've got a display board here of how to join things, which was last term's work around technological practise.
As the lead teacher I try to find resources that will help teach the learning progression. This one here is a resource for technological knowledge and technological products, so the teacher can show a whole lot of different brushes and the children can work out their different functions.
Teaching technological modelling, you can look at product flops. This is a really good resource. There are lots on the internet. This one here is bottled water for pets, and children can look at that product and see was that a good invention or not. There’s another one here, touch of yoghurt shampoo.
This one here is useful for technological systems, of course you’re talking about inputs, transformation and the black box, and the output. And so the children of course are wondering what’s inside this launcher. And so after the students have investigated how this little outcome works, they can then go ahead and make their own.
If you look in your school’s resource, where you keep your books, you’ll find that there are so many big books already available on teaching technological outcomes.
Asking about images or objects is another great teaching strategy. So I have some objects on a table, the children can guess and ask questions about the object and then you can discuss the object later on. I have my grandmother's chest here at school for the children to have a look at. They have no idea what’s inside it. It’s actually a hand sewing machine. So they've been having a look today and writing down questions about the unknown artifact and on Friday I might let them have a look at what’s inside.
So it’s just another way of hooking children into technology, and using an artifact, an unknown artifact or an image is really useful. And having little ten minute conversations around an object or an image is a perfect way to hook children into technology.
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