Nov 19 2012

7 Technologies to Give Thanks For

Educators reveal the classroom innovations that have the biggest impact on teaching and learning.

Innovation is everywhere in education. Hardly a day goes by without a new hardware or software release that promises to revolutionize teaching and learning.

It’s not beyond the realm of possibility that one of these innovations could someday alter the student-teacher dynamic. It certainly wouldn’t be the first time.

As we gas up our cars and brave airport security lines to spend time with friends and family this Thanksgiving, it seems as good a time as any to take stock of the innovations that we are most thankful for in schools.

To do that, we polled our readers on Twitter, asking them to name one technology that they couldn't imagine life in the classroom without.


Blogs have been around almost as long as the Internet, but educators continue to use them for writing instruction, collaboration and professional development.

Digital Cameras

The handheld devices make it easier than ever for teachers and students to bring the world around them into the classroom.


This social learning platform simplifies classroom-based online interaction between students and teachers.

Google Apps

Free resources from the online search provider continue to give schools more options for storing and creating documents without the cost.


Portable LCD projectors have made those clumsy overhead machines a thing of the past, and teachers—and students—couldn’t be happier.


Perhaps no single piece of technology has done more for education in the last 10 years than the notebook. And web browsers, particularly ones with security measures that schools can adjust and monitor, make all the difference.

Open-Source Software

Software can be an expensive proposition for a lot of schools. Open source gives educators options that won’t break the bank. (edit: And, as John Iglar points out in the comment section below, the tools also give teachers and studetns improved "choice and control," allowing them to become more software creators than consumers.)  

So, what classroom innovations are you most thankful for?


Zero Trust–Ready?

Answer 3 questions on how your organization is implementing zero trust.