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Consider the unique role of ICT to a child's education and to a child's learning, especially modelling to encourage understanding and knowledge

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Introduction

Consider the unique role of ICT to a child's education and to a child's learning, especially modelling to encourage understanding and knowledge ICT is more than just another teaching tool. Its potential for improving the quality and standards of pupils' education is significant (NCC, 1999). ICT (Information and Communication Technology) has a distinctive contribution to play in all children's primary education in that it prepares children to engage in a rapidly changing world in which work and other activities are increasingly changing. This is due to children's ability to access varied and developing technology. Children can learn how to use ICT to gain access to ideas and experiences from a wide range of people, communities and cultures. They are also increasing able to think about its implications for use at home, school and in their future careers. I believe that ICT has a unique contribution to make to a child's primary education and to their learning in that it can easily be taught across all of the primary subjects. Whilst still teaching children about ICT this does not interfere with the learning of the other subject. There are four features of ICT which help us see how important it is in the curriculum, they also show how it is distinctive from other subjects. These are Interactivity, Speed and Automatic functions, Capacity and Range, and Provisionality. ...read more.

Middle

Children can also be employed in the selection and interpretation of information. The technology for processing information includes the word processor, the spreadsheet, database programs, sensors, and modelling programs. Spreadsheet programs take the struggle away from creating tables, drawing graphs and working with numbers. Database programs allow children to search for information and look for patterns within it. Sensors, for example, help children (and teachers) to measure changes and draw graphs. Modelling programs help represent scientific ideas that are maybe hard to grasp in real life and if there is a common characteristic, they allow the child to do more and go further. Children can use ICT-based models and simulations to explore patterns and relationships, and make predictions about the consequences of their decisions, without the teaching of ICT within schools this is not so straightforward. Within this section of the assignment, I will be concentrating on the area of modelling and simulations, which relate primarily to the ICT function of interactivity, on of the most unique areas of ICT. Computer models are, representation of the real world, or abstract situations...pupils should use, investigate, manipulate and later design, these models (Poole, 1998). Modelling is an activity that can be used in many curriculum subjects, in ICT children can, within a stimulating medium, learn to control pre-prepared models and then construct their own. ...read more.

Conclusion

Children learn that ICT can reduce the need for memory or calculations while increasing speed and accuracy, this allows children to be creative in adding factors or changing relationships. Replication allows patterns to be looked at and from these patterns the children can then go onto generalise and then theorise, an important and unique aspect of ICT in a child's education. Activities based on modelling are often about sharing, investigating and then explaining their ideas with others, doing this helps children to start to analyse what they are doing and so strengthen their own understanding. Ball (1999) explored the effects of gravity on different planets using a spreadsheet. He found that using ICT promoted high-level scientific thinking by some of the children. Modelling can help children to see the relationship between cause and effect and encourages greater logical, sequential and creative thought (Byrne & Sharp 2002) and so should be a significant aspect of primary (and secondary) education for all children. Within the curriculum there are many opportunities to enhance the teaching and learning of by using ICT, from using simulations and models when it would be impossible or too dangerous to do otherwise, to using sensors to speed up an investigation. My belief is that by using ICT learning and understanding can be achieved that could not have been done without it, or not as effectively or efficiently which is why I feel that ICT can make a distinctive contribution to a child's primary education. ...read more.

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