To run an organized and efficient classroom, proper planning is required. With more paperwork all the time, the teachers somehow feel that it mars their creativity in the class. With the advancement of new technologies, the classrooms have also modernized. Now, many schools and colleges are using mobile devices and computers in their classroom to enhance the learning experience of their students. The efficient use of these technologies raises the hope of a paperless classroom.
Different universities, schools, and colleges are using different approaches for developing a paperless classroom. You must have seen some schools now using iPad or laptops for books, pens, and papers. They supplement the iPads and laptops with software that is similar to Blackboards. The use of overhead projectors is also not new in school nowadays.
Benefits of a paperless classroom:
The benefits of a paperless classroom are not limited to just teachers. They are equally beneficial for the students. Let us discuss the potential benefits of it for both the teachers and the students.
BENEFITS FOR THE TEACHER:
1. No requirement of any physical paper that may perish, be forgotten or lost.
2. No photocopies of the handouts are required. Teachers can share their content on a shared software from where the students can access them whenever and wherever they want.
3. Teachers can store all of the textbooks, students’ homework, and lecture notes on devices like iPad.
4. In case, the teacher forgets to assign homework in the class, the homework can be assigned even after the class.
5. Teachers can send multiple reminders to their students for their homework.
6. Teachers no longer need to be tied to their desks. They can project the device’s screen on to the projection screen and can walk around freely. It helps to monitor the students well and keep a check on them.
7. A teacher can create a discussion by using the discussion boards or other such similar feature whereby a teacher posts a discussion question and asks for the students’ response to it. This helps to motivate students to practice the concepts well. It helps in revision also.
8. Teachers can take real-time tests, avoiding any possibility of cheating or exiting the test. By using this feature, students and teachers both can get immediate feedback and results.
BENEFITS FOR STUDENTS:
1. Students require no filing system. Even the most disorganized students can find their notes in an organized manner on a shared software.
2. Students need not carry their heavy textbooks in the class. They do not have to worry about forgetting their book at home.
3. The students can access and read the assignments or notes anytime. Even if they are absent, they do not need to depend on their friends or teachers for the study notes and other works.
4. Many types of software exist to help teachers and students to view the present running average of the grades for any student. This ongoing assessment of the work that helps them to record their progress as regards their aims. This gives them a chance to improve in the mid-way.
5. The discussion abilities provided by the new technologies help the students to revise the content easily and interestingly with teachers and friends alike.
6. Students can enjoy other educational apps in their free time. They can use them for spelling practice, vocabulary building, or memory enhancements. Paperless classrooms really provide students ample time for other enjoyable activities also.
7. Browsing ability helps the student to do research on the topic instantly. This helps to make any presentation or project in the class very interesting.
8. Students learn the content more interestingly and interactively.
The success of paperless classrooms depends on how effectively and efficiently are the resources used for enhancing the learning of the students. All of this sounds interesting, but it is challenging as well. Setting up the devices in the classrooms take a lot of time. Students need to be trained to use them. The devices need to be updated and charged all the time. Effective and safe handling of the devices is expected from the students, which is not possible all the time. Students may use devices other than educational purposes. This may hinder their progress.
"The success of paperless classrooms depends on how effectively and efficiently are the resources used for enhancing the learning of the students.”
Both sides have their benefits and disadvantages. We need to work on these challenges in order to overcome them and make the dream of a paperless classroom come true. It is not that much difficult to do but requires excessive determination and motivation to make it work. Once you will develop an effective system for running a paperless classroom, many will never want to revert back to the old ways of teaching and learning.