Technology is all around us. It drives our culture, industry, and education. Gaining and then instilling the proper perspective regarding technical goals and practices should be a top concern as we homeschool.

Ultimately, we are responsible for our children, and technology instruction should be taught at an early age in a safe learning environment. Children learn about technology easily and probably already know a lot of basic computer skills, so we need to fill in any gaps, as well as show our children that we feel these concepts are important and worth learning. Start now with a firm understanding of technology to help them be more confident and successful in life.

Integrating Technology

There are many ways to teach your child about technology as you homeschool. As you begin instructing your child concerning computers, consider the amount of time that you have for each subject and incorporate technology instruction appropriately. Take a few moments to consider how often you would like to teach technology. You could decide to dedicate one day a week to this subject area or maybe include it in your curriculum every day for a month. It could even be an incentive or a motivating topic that encourages your child.

Choose a time of day that works best for you and your child. You may even want to tackle a large project that would take a few days to complete. Teaching your child technology does not need to take away from the other subjects that you are teaching. The great thing about teaching technology is the fact that you can integrate technology skills into your current curriculum. Following are just some of the ways you could use technology when teaching your current curriculum.

-Use a word processor for a spelling test.

-Listen to a Bible story online.

-Research a current science topic using the Internet.

-Use Google Earth to locate certain countries around the world.

-Using a word processor or spreadsheet, design a word search by creating a table.

-Read a book online.

-Play math games online.

National Educational Technology Standards

Begin by brainstorming and making a list of information you would like your child to know about computers and technology. The National Educational Technology Standards for Students (NETS) could guide you as you select topics and activities. The NETS are similar to other national and state learning standards and are used to show what your student should know concerning technology. Become familiar with these standards, and identify what your child needs to learn. Technology has become a huge part of our lives, and these six standards could help you pinpoint any gaps in your child’s technology knowledge: (1) Creativity and Innovation, (2) Communication and Collaboration, (3) Research and Information Fluency, (4) Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making, (5) Digital Citizenship, and (6) Technology Operations and Concepts.

Even with little or no technology background, you can facilitate technical learning. Prepare for the technology activity when you have a few minutes to think about it, and plan using the NETS, books, and online resources. There are many computer books available to help you, as well as many free resources online that can be located using Google search engine terms such as “introduction to computers site:edu.”

Once you select a topic, decide on which activity or activities will best teach related skills to your child. Write a list of everything your child will do on a piece of paper or poster board and display the list in your classroom area. As you complete each task, place a check mark next to it or cross it out. This simple tool can help your child know exactly what is expected, and he or she will also feel a sense of accomplishment when the task has been completed successfully.

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