Some people think that schools should stop teaching students by using books because students find them boring, and that children can learn from films, TV, video games and computer instead. To what extent do you agree or disagree? Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.
Today’s students may see themselves growing up in a learning environment surrounded by digital screens rather than print books. An increasing number of schools acknowledge the growing influence of technology and have responded in kind by teaching students through films, TV, video games and computer instead of books on paper. Without downplaying the many advantages of learning from screens, there are significant consequences to discounting the value of leaning from books.
To begin with, there is a popular assumption that schools should stop teaching students by using books because younger people find books boring. This assumption seems to already have had an impact on book resourcing decisions at many schools, with some schools probably choosing to stop using paper books from classes in response to a perceived greater preference for screens. That is to say, schools in general are motivated to increase screen use across every subject area in the academic curriculum, and the trend will continue unabated. It is also assumed that students’ preference for screens rather than books would translate into better learning outcomes. Like it or not, the proliferation of screens is here to stay, so schools need to get on board and accept that. Besides, there is no denying the fact that the use of screens saves resources, in addition to protecting the Earth, for that matter.
However, the use of books at schools is down but not out. Although new forms of classroom technology like digital textbooks are more accessible and portable, it would be wrong to assume that students are automatically better served by digital reading just because they prefer it. In theory, students might say they could perform better when reading on screens, but in practice their actual performance could suffer. Research suggests that overall comprehension may be better for print versus digital reading, which means that schools should not underestimate the vale of using books even in an increasingly digital world. In this respect, teachers could make students aware that their ability to comprehend the texts may be influenced by the medium they choose, but there is no benefit in selecting screens over books. There are reasons to go paperless, of course; but there is clearly something significant that would be lost with print’s demise.
In conclusion, for school children, the benefits of learning from screens are obvious, nevertheless it is important not to entirely exclude learning from print materials. Books could be boring sometimes, so are screens. After all, there should always be a place for print in students’ academic lives—no matter how technologically savvy they become.