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Curricular Innovation, Research Proposal Example

Pages: 1

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Research Proposal

A major concern for schools on my community is a lack of technology in the classrooms. Although classroom technology would solve many gaps in the current education system and allow hands on learning experiences for children of many age groups, public schools and some private schools are simply unable to afford microscopes, iPads, radios, etc (Boser, 2013). However, most schools do have access to a shared computer lab, where students are able to visit during scheduled computer time with their class (Greenwell, 2009). In order to foster learning that is modern in the 21st century, it is important to incorporate computer usage into many subjects that middle school students learn because it will help them form a basis of understanding of these systems that they will need throughout their entire lives.

I therefore propose that at least once a week, the science teacher should take the class to the computer lab for a lesson that takes advantage of internet technology. Although schools don’t usually have enough funding to allow students to complete activities such as animal dissection, we can take advantage of online programs that allow students to learn the same skills they would through physical manipulation of these experiments in a virtual format. McGraw-Hill Higher Education offers a free online “Virtual Frog Dissection” program that is valuable for students of many age levels. It offers explanations and descriptions of the frog’s external and internal anatomy and allows students to click around the frog and use virtual tools that imitate the actual cuts students would make into a real frog sample (MHHE, n.d.). The teacher can change the difficulty of this virtual lab based on the capabilities of their students; a class that has a low level understanding of science could be asked primarily to look at the heart, lungs, liver, and kidney. A higher level class could be asked to identify lesser known body parts, such as the spleen.

Although this particular application was designed for middle school students, virtual dissections and other virtual labs could be used for all levels of learning for many years. Since the internet will be relevant in the future, these applications should be continuously developed for classroom purposes. Soon, this will replace the need for schools to forgo certain lessons because they simply do not have the money. Instead, the students will be able to learn the concepts they need and they will be better prepared for their future.

References

Boser, U. (2013). Are Schools Getting a Big Enough Bang for Their Education Technology Buck. Center for American Progress. Retrieved from http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/education/report/2013/06/14/66485/are-schools-getting-a-big-enough-bang-for-their-education-technology-buck/

Greenwell, S. (2009). Are Computer Labs Still Necessary? Retrieved from http://staceygreenwell.blogspot.com/2009/03/are-computer-labs-still-necessary.html

MHHE. (n.d.). Virtual Frog Dissection. Retrieved from http://www.mhhe.com/biosci/genbio/virtual_labs/BL_16/BL_16.html

Kessler, K. (2010). 8 Ways Technology is Improving the Classroom. Mashable. Retrieved from http://mashable.com/2010/11/22/technology-in-education/

US News. (2013). Technology in the Classroom. Retrieved from http://www.usnews.com/education/technology-in-the-classroom

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