In the field: how K-12 teachers are using technology in the classroom

September 21, 2015

The use of technology in K-12 classrooms is on the rise. In a 2015 survey of 400 teachers, 53% indicated they were currently using blended learning—a mix of online learning and classroom instruction.

Capella University asked educators in various school districts how they were using technology in their classrooms. The answers depended heavily on budgets, locations, and the grade level each teacher represented. Some spoke of 1:1 ratios; others provided broader examples of its use.

How do you use technology in the classroom?

“My school has a 1:1 iPad ratio, meaning every student has one. This has allowed me to do research projects and other activities more effectively. Whether it is math, reading, writing, or another topic, there is an application that I can use to incorporate into my lessons. These applications are usually very engaging for most of my students and they are able to figure out the technology within minutes."

“A teacher has to be attentive to what each student is doing so that [they] are not getting distracted by things that do not pertain to the lesson. [But] overall, I would say that iPads have made lesson planning easier and make long-term planning easier as well. You can sync the devices with a SMART Board® to make a presentation, create videos, etc. They have allowed me to be more creative and innovative with how I plan my lessons.”       

Danny, Elementary Teacher, Minnesota

“We have a SMART Board® that we use all day long. My classroom has two iPads that can be used during language arts, math, and free choices – there are many good learning and creative apps.”             

Sara, Kindergarten Teacher, Minnesota

“Our kids regularly use Google Docs – a wonderful tool for writing. Students can collaborate on writing and share their documents with each other for peer edits. This is also how they submit their written work to me. Google Docs works as a portfolio, of sorts, for the students. There are many interactive websites for kids to make learning ‘fun’ – virtual tours of historic places, ‘build your own castle’ and virtual science labs.”

Alan, Middle School Teacher, Wisconsin

“I have a computer, iPad, and television that all connect to my TV and computers in the library. I can introduce new vocabulary and show pictures. My students are English Language Learners – pictures are the key to helping them the most. Learning should be fun and engaging, and technology helps me do this.”            

Reba, ELL Elementary Teacher, South Korea

“In my classroom, we use laptops and a SMART Board®. The laptops are a great tool to help measure the student’s academic performance in math, vocabulary, reading comprehension, and science. The SMART Board® is able to display pictures, videos, and audio clips, while also allowing the students to manipulate the information and search for answers."

“Technology keeps the students on task, motivated, and engaged. It’s an excellent learning tool for all students. My students love it, and so do I.”  

Lorraine, Special Education Teacher, Virginia

Classroom technology is a growing trend

Technology helps students better access information and prepare for a digital world, and there are many online resources to help teachers set up 1:1 or blended learning classrooms for ongoing success.

Capella offers advanced degrees in education technology to prepare K-12 educators to integrate digital techniques into instructional plans. Learn more about:

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