Media in the classroom engage students in learning and provide a richer experience. Media are useful tools for illustrating a lesson, allowing students to see examples of what they are learning. Interactive media such as Smart Boards allow students to move items on a screen for illustrative purposes. Students view media as exciting learning aids, making learning entertaining and less monotonous, according to the report "Benefits and Risks of Media and Technology in the Classroom" from the UCLA Office of Instructional Development.
Appeal to Multiple Learning Styles
Media appeal to visual, auditory and kinesthetic learners. Students can watch a movie, listen to music or interact with digital media on an interactive Smart Board. Effective teachers do not rely on teaching students in merely one style but use a variety of styles to reach the greatest number of students. Providing a rich learning experience through classroom media keeps students focused and engaged in learning.
Creates an Authentic Learning Experience
Using newspapers, brochures, job application forms and news broadcasts provides authentic opportunities for students to learn using real-world media. This method simulates real-life experiences in which students must read, evaluate and interpret information based on items that they need in their daily lives. When students use objects from the real world, they can see the connection between what they learn in school and how they can use the knowledge as a member of society.
Strengthens Critical-Thinking Skills
Teachers can use media to hone critical-thinking skills. Students can write about a song, interpret a movie or interpret a news broadcast. Teachers can use the media to ask probing questions and facilitate discussions that extend beyond basic comprehension questions. Teachers can also create projects in which students develop their own media, using classroom media as a model. This hands-on activity challenges students to formulate media, using their own creativity and interpretations from classroom media.
Teaches Students to Use Media
Using media in the classroom teaches students how to use and care for resources to further their education. Students not only learn how to use the Internet, a dictionary or a newspaper for information, but they also learn how to care for and protect the items they use, according to the Center for Media Literacy. Students can also learn how to determine the value of media and learn methods to contribute to society, producing their own media.
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