Bring Your Own Device For Child Education!

Bring Your Own Devices

What is BYOD?

Bring Your Own Devices Technology
Bring Your Own Devices

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is a policy that become common among educational institutions following the innovative revolution in technology that becomes the realities of the 21st century lately.

Bring your own device” (BYOD) refers to a technology model that allows students to bring their own devices to school for learning in the classroom.

The term “BYOD” was first used in the business spheres some years ago, with firms allowing their staff to use their personal devices in the office. Telecommunication technologies have deeply penetrated many areas of human lives.

Almost any human can hardly imagine himself without such devices as a smartphone, a computer, a laptop, etc. While BYOD policy is not a nation-wide standard just yet, it is expected to be spreading to more and more schools. It’s a new age!

Albeit, there are laudable pros to this policy but not without its attendant challenges and risks posed to both parents and teachers.

Challenges in acceptance of new innovative technology are dated back to Socrates who running comparisons on the then old oral technology and the then-new written technology was somewhat antagonistic to writing and scholars claim that he never wrote anything down himself.

His argument was that ‘if men learn this, it will implant forgetfulness in their souls; they will cease to exercise memory because they rely on that which is written, calling things to remembrance no longer from within themselves, but by means of external marks’.

Ironically, we only know about Socrates’ argument against writing because his student Plato ignored his teacher and wrote them down. In this age, it is similarly important to expose the young generation on how to augment their brains in using their other technology “brains”.

Very funny it is, this points to the very fact that innovative technologies will continue to have an open embrace in this planet earth. So welcome to the new age teachers and parents.

This article will offer a guide to both parents and teachers on BYOD recommendations to mitigate these risks and challenges.

ARGUMENTS FOR THE USE OF PERSONAL DEVICES IN SCHOOLS

  1. It enhances creativity among the students as it gives an extension to human capabilities, rich sources of information, and gives contexts for social interactions.
  2. Students can learn from experts anywhere in the world as technology allows for building local and global communities that include teachers, administrators, students, parents, practicing scientists, etc.
  3. It enables learning to continue beyond the classroom.
  4. Replacement to textbooks which are much heavier and spacious thus lightening the back pack of students.
  5. It encourages students to take responsibility for their learning by choosing from a variety of materials through global connections.
  6. It promotes collaborate exercises and small group work in and outside the classes thus expanding opportunities for learning.
  7. It allows for more effective and different class learning activities.
  8. Enhanced Home-school communication between teachers and students thus allowing for better students feedback.
  9. It brings diversity in learning with different resources for different learners.
  10. The teachers are able to make for more students engagement like using augmented reality and virtual reality to help students see and experience things they would not otherwise have access to. Also, because many new technologies are interactive, it is much easier to have the students learn by doing, receive feedback, and progressively build new knowledge.

ARGUMENTS AGAINST USE OF PERSONAL DEVICES IN SCHOOLS

  1. Fears that students would face moral temptations, misuse this devices and be distracted with gaming, watching videos or texting and other unmonitored social networking leading to consumption/creations of inappropriate content.
  2. Fears that students from low-income families could be disadvantaged when they are not able to afford the devices with their network costs. Because it will limit their ability to participate in and outside class programs. Thus creating Possible dichotomies in class.
  3. Fears on security issues such as theft, cyber-safety, virus control etc.
  4. Fears of increase in the amount of “screen-time” children are exposed to and its attendant health challenges.
  5. Fears of students inability to use and have proper care for such devices.
  6. Fears that the teachers may not be equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to guide this students especially with the rapid pace of innovation.
  7. Some devices like laptops and tablets have loud, clacking keyboards and bright, colored screens. Such devices adds nuisance and distracts the learning atmosphere.
  8. Others argue that notes taken with devices cause lower recall of in-class concepts compared to hand-written notes. Because it reduces the students ability to think and follow a class discussion.

DOES THE CONS OUTWEIGH THE PRONS OF BYOD?

The answer to this question is still very much left to personal opinions. But let’s face it.

Despite reasonable arguments about students distractions, costs and improper skills set of teachers, personal computing have had tangible impacts in the nature of human life.

The impact of these devices on the lives of adults and children of today is amazing but it is only the beginning. It’s latest innovation in the tablet and smartphone makes the information revolution more personal and ever-present. Thus, these devices have become irreplaceable compliment to human brains.

We are all more powerful with our devices. We can also be more distracted beings but it’s natural, every addition comes with drawbacks. But asking someone to give up their smartphone is like Socrates arguments against writing technology.

So, whose responsibility is it to teach students to maximize these unlimited powerful tools to ease self-learning? Whose responsibility is it to teach responsible use?

Your guess would be as good as mine; the teachers and the parents!

Parents Responsibility in BYOD Policies

  1. Children need guidance from their parents to learn how to appropriately use technology. Beyond just technical skills, healthy technology use also requires media literacy; an understanding of how to protect privacy, security, safety; and even when to put down the device to engage in other activities and educational materials.
  2. The parents also needs to understand how students and their teachers are using technology and how they can support that use both at school and at home.
  3. Parents should lead by examples in making proper use of such devices by consciously associating technology with learning in the minds of their children.
  4. Parents could help in caring for these devices by taking steps like getting a protective sleeve, cover, hard shell case or a briefcase.
  5. Parents could help set reasonable time limits for device use at home.
  6. The parents also would need to pay attention to the child’s physical well being by knowing and encouraging proper eye and posture development.
  7. The parents should help choose the appropriate devices for educational purpose. The following may be considered on choosing a device; Examples of devices for educational purpose; laptop computers, smart phones, tablets and other mobile devices. Albeit, laptops and tablets are most commonly obtainable.
  8. Oftentimes it is necessary to know about the operating system, connectivity, battery, and storage. A good educational devices should have WIFI Anywhere from 2Gb – 8Gb RAM. BATTERY LIFE – 4hours-8hours.

Teachers Responsibility in BYOD Policies

  1. Schools that are willing to implement the BOYD policy could consider establishing a professionally managed loan scheme for funding of these devices in the school/country.
  2. Such financing arrangement, could have strong public-private sector backing, if the desired growth in education technology must come to realization without the attendant challenges of the have and have not syndrome.
  3. The loan scheme could allow those who cannot pay once to pay in three instalments, like making a yearly payment of one-third spread over three sessions joined to the students school fees.
  4. It is much more the responsibility of teachers to teach the students on appropriate devices usage.
  5. Thus, the teachers requires to teach the students media literacy; an understanding of how to protect privacy, security, safety; how to help the students learn to use safe and precise search terms so they find the information they need online and are not exposed to potentially inappropriate images or websites and even when to put down the device to engage in other activities and face-to-face conversations in the class.
  6. The teachers should be conscious of rapid pace with which technology is evolving thereby drawing up practical curricula based on real-world problems to keep pace with the fast innovative technological revolutions especially in the various use of social media networks and other participatory/related media to enhance self-leaning.
  7. The teachers needs new skill set, new tool sets and would need to maximize the speed of these new technologies to participate in studies in the digital world. That way they would be able to keep abridged with new developments. For new skill set and new tool sets required to train this students using this devices, the teachers would need to be in continuous upgrade.
  8. Teachers would need to maximize the use of augmented reality and virtual reality to help students see fun in learning. They need to learn how to properly and responsibly communicate via text, audio, video, and digital image creation.

CONCLUSION

Technology has become an important instrument in education and hold great promise both for increasing access to knowledge and as a means of promoting learning. BYOD can be incredibly useful but it’s never a substitute for great teaching. As such, Some policies need to be implemented during the lectures to assure that each student studies in a suitable environment. Secondly,the purpose of BYOD should be to enhance – not replace – the interaction between the teacher and students as well as among the students and parents and fellow students.

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Ede Stephen

Ede Stephen, Social Entrepreneur. I blog with a niche in Christian relationship matters and am a freelance writer. My goal is to learn and to share my knowledge.

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Chidirim

Great one! Having the device is not enough but we also have to maximize the benefits and reduce the adverse effects. Thank you