Advances in Educational Technology By: Mary mastromichalis

The Hornbook

Date: 1600's

A hornbook is a text made from wood, bone, leather, or stone. The book was then covered with a protected layer of horn or mica. The text would consist of mostly the letters of the alphabet or some form of scripture.

During this time period I am sure that the invention of the hornbook was very useful for children learning to read and write. If they obtained a hornbook they would be able to carry it around and practice as needed.

The Blackboard

Date: 1801

Inventor: James Pillian

Students had long been using individual slate boards to practice and work on assignments. The ability to write and rewrite to work on problems made a slate board ideal for learning. James Pillian placed a large piece of slate in the front of a classroom and then the modern day blackboard was born. Going from individual slate to a large slate that the whole class can see changed the way of teaching. Teachers would have more time to address the class as a whole instead of having to work individually with each student to show them the same thing.


Date: 1887

Inventor: Albert Blake Dick

A.B.D Licensed Thomas Edisons patents for autographic printing and created the mimeograph. This invention benefitted students and teachers and improved learning in the classroom. Students were now able to be given individual worksheets, instead of copying information. This saves time in the classroom and helps everyone to stay on the same page.


Date: 1900's

The first pencil was actually made around the 1500's but was not perfected and manufactured until around the 1900's. At this time they became readily available for everyone and helped advance classrooms allover. The pencil made it easy to work on class assignments and rework problems by simply erasing. The pencil eventually replaced the individual slate.


Date: 1910

Inventor: Nathaniel Baldwin

The invention of headphones brought with it a new type of teaching. A realization was made that students could learn through repetition by listening to lessons on the headphones. Language labs were developed where students could use this practice.

Overhead Projector

Date: 1930's

Inventor: Roger Appeldorn

There have been variations of the overhead projector throughout history. This projector changed learning in the classroom by being a consistent and easy to use product. Teachers were able to engage their students by using it and produce visual aids. This invention could also have saved teachers time when planning lessons. They could pre-write their lessons and notes on to the transparency sheets and simply place them on the projector when it was time. This would allow for more teaching and learning time for the students.


Date: 1972

Inventor: Michael Sokolski

The invention of the scantron was a huge advancement in technology. The scantron allows for automatic grading. This advancement mainly benefits the teacher and does little to benefit the student. It does require multiple choice questions which can benefit students by giving them a better change at getting an answer correct if they are unsure.

Interactive Whiteboard

Date: 1999

Inventors: David Martin and Nancy Knowlton

The invention of the interactive whiteboard allows for a very interactive classroom. It is treated as a white board but also a touch screen computer. This allows a teacher to pull up anything on their individual computer screen and broadcast it to the whole class. That makes the options for examples endless and brings a new aspect to learning.


Date: 2005

Inventors: Tim Stelzer, Mats Selen, Gary Gladding, and Benny Brown

The iClicker is a great invention. It allows the teacher to ask the classroom a questions and the students will answer in a polling format. This is great for two reasons. It allows the teacher to see exactly how well the class is grasping the concept and it allows students to answer the question without fear of being wrong since they are anonymous.


Date: 2010

Inventor: Steve Jobs

The iPad has really revolutionized learning in the classroom. It allows for the downloading of books instead of students having to lug around hard copies. It also has interactive learning apps. Students are able to take home their iPads and work outside of the classroom. It has made learning more fun and easier at the same time.

The future of educational technology!

There have been so many technological advancements that have helped education and made it easier to learn. It is difficult to think of or imagine things that haven't already been created. However, there is a piece of technology that I have heard is in the stages of development that I think will be one of the greatest advancements in educational technology ever. The invention I am talking about is a real time language translator. The user could speak into the device in their own language and then out of the device would come the translated speech in their choice of language. This would break down language barriers and open up a whole new aspect to learning. This would make it easier for people to communicate and learn from one another not only about school subjects, about each others culture as well. I could see how some would argue that it would make people lazy with learning new languages since they would have their own personal translator. I think that it would actually increase the learning of language since it would be so much easier to figure out how to say things in other languages.


Created with images by Kevan Westenbarger - "chalkboard" • Seattle Municipal Archives - "Steno pool, 1952" • Obliot - "pencils" • Pexels - "headphone headphones listening music" • Sarah M Stewart - "Throwing out old teaching and learning technology" • brianc - "Scantron" • AV Hire London - "Smartboard 680I Interactive Whiteboard Package Interactive whiteboard for Hire" • derekvo1 - "iclicker" • meedanphotos - "ipad"

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