Teachers with Technology

New pencils…New books…New technology? Millions of teachers and students in cities everywhere have hit the blacktop once again for a fresh, new school year! But, with this ever growing population of tech savvy students (and their devices) entering our classrooms, how does your technology management measure up? Do you triumph or get trumped when it comes to technology in your class?

As teachers, we LOVE getting new technology as budgets allow. We realize every school is different, and your school’s stash of devices may vary from class to class or grade to grade. BUT, one thing is clear – Technology is here to stay. We cannot ignore it. We must embrace it. Our classrooms are changing about as fast as the technology is, but teachers everywhere are up for the challenge of integrating these powerful tools into our everyday teaching.  So how do we do it?

No matter what devices your classroom may be fortunate enough to have, management is key when it comes to technology. Many kids nowadays are entering Kindergarten knowing full well {some better than adults} how to operate hand held machinery…Think about it…How may toddlers have you seen rocking a smart phone or tablet around town?  They may be used to using these devices anytime and anywhere at home, but using technology in the classroom is not a free for all.

When teaching with technology in the classroom, we always strive to set our students up for success. To do this, we provide the class with clear, concise expectations for technology use by utilizing question words they already know:

Who – Let the class know who is allowed to use the devices. Whole group? Small group? With the teacher or parent volunteer? By themselves?

What – What exactly are you expecting them to do with the device? Is it free choice or is there a particular learning objective involved. For younger students, providing pictures of the particular activity, app, or game they are to complete may be helpful.

When – How long do they have with their device? Is it theirs for the duration of their center? Is there a time limit? Again, for younger children providing a visual representation of the time they have (For example, a picture of a clock representing 9:30…”When the clock looks like this, your time is up.”)

Where – Where do you expect them to work? By themselves or with a group? On the floor or in their seats? Is under the table an option? They do ask… J

Why – Yes, technology is fun! But, there should be a reason why they are using it. For many teachers, this is typically where our standards or grade level benchmarks come into play. YAY!  Let the class know why they are working with their device, why they are practicing, and what they will gain from this experience. Some teachers post this on the board or share aloud before beginning, then ask the students to sum up why they did what they did at the end.

How – Here’s the BIGGIE. How do you expect them to care for the class devices?  For us, number one rule is CLEAN HANDS! Also, SITTTING DOWN…No walking and teching in our class!

Setting clear concise expectations before getting started will alleviate some bumps in the road as you fire up the gadgets in class. It is integral to the success of our students to set them up with clear procedures and expectations for the Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How’s of Device Use in your class. 

So you’re all fired up, ready to go…Now what?

It’s no secret there are hundreds thousands millions of opportunities to incorporate device use into whole group, small groups and independent learning.  As technology is rapidly developing, we are learning new ways each day to share this ever-growing world with our students. But, we have also found it to be a nice reward for our learners too. Those who are engaging in the lesson, participating, and focusing may have opportunities to come up and show us how it’s done! This keeps the kids who are tech motivated eager to learn, and gives those who are not an opportunity to observe and hopefully gain confidence for the next round.  But, let’s face it…nowadays most kids LOVE the gadgets and beg for a turn!

Still, as Moms ourselves, we remain cautious of the amount of time we are plugging our students in at school, for we know many are returning home to do the same. You can read about how we managed our own kids Tech Time {here} on our blog, flutteringthroughfirstgrade.com



We teachers are in a new phase of learning with all these amazing devices! We find it a BIG task to teach responsible use at a young age…A lesson, we may need ourselves at not such a young age! J We are shaping the minds of the future and technology definitely plays an important role. Helping students understand the power they hold in their little hands goes well beyond just an App or a Game and is a challenge, but one we believe is worth the Tech Trek.  May your own class Tech Travels triumph this year!


Christy & Tammy


Christy & Tammy have been teaching first grade together for 10 years. We began this journey as strangers, each working at different schools in our district, but joined together to share a class when we had kids of our own. We have grown into great teaching partners and amazing friends along the way.

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