When classrooms lack basic supplies such as books and pencils, advanced technology such as laptops and tablets can seem like a luxury. Yet “luxury” is far from the way many DonorsChoose.org teachers would describe the technology they use in their classrooms.“Preparing our students to survive and thrive in a technological age will not only make them more prepared to be future innovators and leaders but will also allow them to become more culturally aware and knowledgeable global citizens,” says Mr. Daunis, a middle school teacher in Connecticut.So, when it comes to technology in the classroom, what’s really working? What do teachers need more of?To answer those questions and more, we turned to the experts: our teachers. We examined trends in the technology requests from teachers on DonorsChoose.org, we conducted a survey of over 1,500 teachers who had a technology project funded during the 2014-2015 school year, and we asked teachers for personal stories about the impact of technology in their classrooms. Our friends at content marketing agency Column Five helped us organize the information in our first-ever Technology in the Classroom report. Here are five key highlights:
1. More than anything else, teachers crave technology for their classrooms.
2. Tablets are the most popular technology need for most teachers, particularly in the lower grades.
3. Teachers use technology to help students of all abilities, from those who struggle to those who excel.
4. Technology is critical to help meet the diverse needs of special education students.
5. Technology is not making it into the schools that need it most.