History of Educational Technology

There is no written evidence which can tell us exactly who has coined the phrase educational technology. Different educationists, scientists and philosophers at different time intervals have put forwarded different definitions of Educational Technology. Educational technology is a multifaceted and integrated process involving people, procedure, ideas, devices, and organization, where technology from different fields of science is borrowed as per the need and requirement of education for implementing, evaluating, and managing solutions to those problems involved in all aspects of human learning.

Educational technology, broadly speaking, has passed through five stages.

The first stage of educational technology is coupled with the use of aids like charts, maps, symbols, models, specimens and concrete materials. The term educational technology was used as synonyms to audio-visual aids.

The second stage of educational technology is associated with the ‘electronic revolution’ with the introduction and establishment of sophisticated hardware and software. Use of various audio-visual aids like projector, magic lanterns, tape-recorder, radio and television brought a revolutionary change in the educational scenario. Accordingly, educational technology concept was taken in terms of these sophisticated instruments and equipments for effective presentation of instructional materials.

The third stage of educational technology is linked with the development of mass media which in turn led to ‘communication revolution’ for instructional purposes. Computer-assisted Instruction (CAI) used for education since 1950s also became popular during this era.

The fourth stage of educational technology is discernible by the individualized process of instruction. The invention of programmed learning and programmed instruction provided a new dimension to educational technology. A system of self-learning based on self-instructional materials and teaching machines emerged.

The latest concept of educational technology is influenced by the concept of system engineering or system approach which focuses on language laboratories, teaching machines, programmed instruction, multimedia technologies and the use of the computer in instruction. According to it, educational technology is a systematic way of designing, carrying out and evaluating the total process of teaching and learning in terms of specific objectives based on research.

Educational technology during the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, and the Iron Age

Educational technology, despite the uncertainty of the origin of the term, can be traced back to the time of the three-age system periodization of human prehistory; namely the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, and the Iron Age.

Duringthe Stone Age, ignition of fire by rubbing stones, manufacture of various handmade weapon and utensils from stones and clothing practice were some of the simple technological developments of utmost importance. A fraction of Stone Age people developed ocean-worthy outrigger canoe ship technology to migrate from one place to another across the Ocean, by which they developed their first informal education of knowledge of the ocean currents, weather conditions, sailing practice, astronavigation, and star maps. During the later Stone Age period (Neolithic period),for agricultural practice, polished stone tools were made from a variety of hard rocks largely by digging underground tunnels, which can be considered as the first steps in mining technology. The polished axes were so effective that even after appearance of bronze and iron; people used it for clearing forest and the establishment of crop farming.

Although Stone Age cultures left no written records, but archaeological evidences proved their shift from nomadic life to agricultural settlement. Ancient tools conserved in different museums, cave paintings like Altamira Cave in Spain, and other prehistoric art, such as the Venus of Willendorf, Mother Goddess from Laussel, France etc. are some of the evidences in favour of their cultures.

Neolithic Revolution of Stone Age resulted into the appearance of Bronze Age with development of agriculture, animal domestication, and the adoption of permanent settlements. For these practices Bronze Age people further developed metal smelting, with copper and later bronze, an alloy of tin and copper, being the materials of their choice.

The Iron Age people replaced bronze and developed the knowledge of iron smelting technology to lower the cost of living since iron utensils were stronger and cheaper than bronze equivalents. In many Eurasian cultures, the Iron Age was the last period before the development of written scripts.

Educational technology during the period of Ancient civilizations

According to Paul Saettler, 2004, Educational technology can be traced back to the time when tribal priests systematized bodies of knowledge and ancient cultures invented pictographs or sign writing to record and transmit information. In every stage of human civilization, one can find an instructional technique or set of procedures intended to implement a particular culture which were also supported by number of investigations and evidences. The more advanced the culture, the more complex became the technology of instruction designed to reflect particular ways of individual and social behaviour intended to run an educated society. Over centuries, each significant shift in educational values, goals or objectives led to diverse technologies of instruction.

The greatest advances in technology and engineering came with the rise of the ancient civilizations. These advances stimulated and educated other societies in the world to adopt new ways of living and governance.

The Indus Valley Civilization was an early Bronze Age civilization which was located in the northwestern region of the Indian Subcontinent. The civilization was primarily flourished around the Indus River basin of the Indus and the Punjab region, extending upto the Ghaggar-Hakra River valley and the Ganges-Yamuna Doab, (most of the part is under today’s Pakistan and the western states of modern-day India as well as some part of the civilization extending upto southeastern Afghanistan, and the easternmost part of Balochistan, Iran).

There is a long term controversy to be sure about the language that the Harappan people spoke. It is assumed that their writing was at least seems to be or a pictographic script. The script appears to have had about 400 basic signs, with lots of variations. People write their script with the direction generally from right to left. Most of the writing was found on seals and sealings which were probably used in trade and official & administrative work.

Harappan people had the knowledge of the measuring tools of length, mass, and time. They were the first in the world to develop a system of uniform weights and measures.

In a study carried out by P. N. Rao et al. in 2009, published in Science, computer scientists found that the Indus script’s pattern is closer to that of spoken words, which supported the proposed hypothesis that it codes for an as-yet-unknown language.

According to the Chinese Civilization, some of the major techno-offerings from China include paper, early seismological detectors, toilet paper, matches, iron plough, the multi-tube seed drill, the suspension bridge, the wheelbarrow, the parachute, natural gas as fuel, the magnetic compass, the raised-relief map, the blast furnace, the propeller, the crossbow, the South Pointing Chariot, and gun powder. With the invent of paper they have given their first step towards developments of educational technology by further culturing different handmade products of paper as means of visual aids.

Ancient Egyptian language was at one point one of the longest surviving and used languages in the world. Their script was made up of pictures of the real things like birds, animals, different tools, etc. These pictures are popularly called hieroglyph. Their language was made up of above 500 hieroglyphs which are known as hieroglyphics. On the stone monuments or tombs which were discovered and rescued latter on provides the evidence of existence of many forms of artistic hieroglyphics in ancient Egypt.

Educational technology during Medieval and Modern Period

Paper and the pulp papermaking process which was developed in China during the early 2nd century AD, was carried to the Middle East and was spread to Mediterranean by the Muslim conquests. Evidences support that a paper mill was also established in Sicily in the 12th century. The discovery of spinning wheel increased the productivity of thread making process to a great extent and when Lynn White added the spinning wheel with increasing supply of rags, this led to the production of cheap paper, which was a prime factor in the development of printing technology.

The invention of the printing press was taken place in approximately 1450 AD, by Johannes Gutenburg, a German inventor. The invention of printing press was a prime developmental factor in the history of educational technology to convey the instruction as per the need of the complex and advanced-technology cultured society.

In the pre-industrial phases, while industry was simply the handwork at artisan level, the instructional processes were relied heavily upon simple things like the slate, the horn book, the blackboard, and chalk. It was limited to a single text book with a few illustrations. Educational technology was considered synonymous to simple aids like charts and pictures.

The year 1873 may be considered a landmark in the early history of technology of education or audio-visual education. An exhibition was held in Vienna at international level in which an American school won the admiration of the educators for the exhibition of maps, charts, textbooks and other equipments.

Maria Montessori (1870-1952), internationally renowned child educator and the originator of Montessori Method exerted a dynamic impact on educational technology through her development of graded materials designed to provide for the proper sequencing of subject matter for each individual learner. Modern educational technology suggests many extension of Montessori’s idea of prepared child centered environment.

In1833, Charles Babbage’s design of a general purpose computing device laid the foundation of the modern computer and in 1943, the first computing machine as per hi design was constructed by International Business Machines Corporation in USA. The Computer Assisted instruction (CAI) in which the computer functions essentially as a tutor as well as the Talking Type writer was developed by O.K. Moore in 1966. Since 1974, computers are interestingly used in education in schools, colleges and universities.

In the beginning of the 19th century, there were noteworthy changes in the field of education. British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), right from its start of school broadcasts in 1920 had maintained rapid pace in making sound contribution to formal education. In the USA, by 1952, 20 states had the provision for educational broadcasting. Parallel to this time about 98% of the schools in United Kingdom were equipped with radios and there were regular daily programmes.

Sidney L. Pressey, a psychologist of Ohio state university developed a self-teaching machine called ‘Drum Tutor’ in 1920. Professor Skinner, however, in his famous article ‘Science of Learning and art of Teaching’ published in 1945 pleaded for the application of the knowledge derived from behavioral psychology to classroom procedures and suggested automated teaching devices as means of doing so.

Although the first practical use of Regular television broadcasts was in Germany in 1929 and in 1936 the Olympic Games in Berlin were broadcasted through television stations in Berlin, Open circuit television began to be used primarily for broadcasting programmes for entertainment in 1950. Since 1960, television is used for educational purposes.

In 1950, Brynmor, in England, used educational technological steps for the first time. It is to be cared that in 1960, as a result of industrial revolution in America and Russia, other countries also started progressing in the filed of educational technology. In this way, the beginning of educational technology took place in 1960 from America and Russia and now it has reached England, Europe and India.

During the time of around 1950s, new technocracy was turning it attraction to educations when there was a steep shortage of teachers in America and therefore an urgent need of educational technology was felt. Dr. Alvin C. Eurich and a little later his associate, Dr. Alexander J. Stoddard introduced mass production technology in America.

Team teaching had its origin in America in the mid of 1950′s and was first started in the year 1955 at Harvard University as a part of internship plan.

In the year 1956, Benjamin Bloom from USA introduced the taxonomy of educational objectives through his publication, “The Taxonomy of Educational Objectives, The Classification of Educational Goals, Handbook I: Cognitive Domain”.

In 1961, Micro teaching technique was first adopted by Dwight W. Allen and his co-workers at Stanford University in USA.

Electronics is the main technology being developed in the beginning of 21st century. Broadband Internet access became popular and occupied almost all the important offices and educational places and even in common places in developed countries with the advantage of connecting home computers with music libraries and mobile phones.

Today’s classroom is more likely to be a technology lab, a room with rows of students using internet connected or Wi-Fi enabled laptops, palmtops, notepad, or perhaps students are attending a video conferencing or virtual classroom or may have been listening to a podcast or taking in a video lecture. Rapid technological changes in the field of educational have created new ways to teach and to learn. Technological changes also motivated the teachers to access a variety of information on a global scale via the Internet, to enhance their lessons as well as to make them competent professional in their area of concern. At the same time, students can utilize vast resources of the Internet to enrich their learning experience to cope up with changing trend of the society. Now a days students as well teachers are attending seminars, conferences, workshops at national and international level by using the multimedia techno-resources like PowerPoint and even they pursue a variety of important courses of their choice in distance mode via online learning ways. Online learning facility has opened infinite number of doors of opportunities for today’s learner to make their life happier than ever before.

Early Childhood Education Course for Teachers

Early childhood education is a concept that has been applied very effectively to children below the usual school age. It is based on the belief that children will learn through play, which is why the basics are integrated into play and taught to the children. The developer, Jean Piaget, believed those young children and even older ones learn more efficiently effectively through fun and play. Several activities are especially effective such as art, social games and dramatic play. These are supposed to awaken the interest and curiosity of the child and invoke the tendency for make believe and social thinking.

Teachers

Teachers who are educated and trained in early childhood education handle classes in preschool, which includes nursery and kindergarten classes. Children who attend these classes are usually around the ages of three to six years old. Parents are encouraged to be active teachers for their kids as well since they are considered to the first ones to teach while they are still at home. For the most part, some daycare centers recognize the need to integrate the basic lessons to the kids that they care for during the duration of their stay. Such is the importance of educational toys and an educational background for the caregiver. Teachers are taught, educated and trained to recognize the various ways and techniques that will capture the interest and curiosity of a child in order for him or her to want to learn more about the different toys and tools that are utilized. In many universities and schools, this course may reach up to the standard four year course for those teachers but in some, early childhood education may just take a couple of years to learn. Since this is a specialized course, administrators of schools that offer this to young children prefer their teachers to have a full educational background on preschool or elementary as well as have the requisite additional course.

The reality of it is that most of the toys and tools used for early childhood education can be common things that can be seen in the house or replicas of these. This actually encourages the kids to view things in the house in a different way as well as to make them familiar with these things and their uses in everyday life. Make believe and the use of their active imagination is highly encouraged in order for kids to be able to think out of the box and expand their minds and imaginations. Although there is no formal education for this course, some schools and daycare centers integrate formal lessons with play in order to give their children a leg up before they enter nursery or kindergarten. Parents are encouraged to make learning as much fun as they can without the pressure of formal teaching.

This is part of the background for early childhood education. It has become a trend for daycare centers and other places that take care of younger children to integrate basic lessons in their playtime and other activities in order to help kids learn early on.

Health Begins With Water

Health begins with water. Since the body is made mostly of water (about 70%), all body functions are dependent on water. I guess you could call water a universal solvent. Most nutrients with the exception of fats are dissolved in water, transported in the water-based blood system and used by water-filled cells. And, because the cells are filled with water, the water lubricates, them, like cartilage and muscle cells. It also keeps cell walls pliable and receptive to nutrient inflow and waste outflow.

These facts point to the crucial nature of proper hydration for a healthy body. It is even more important as we get older as will be explained soon. Every organ in the body depends on water to function properly and efficiently. When we are not hydrated properly, or we are dehydrated, even a little bit, our bodily functions become labored. Over time, our health can become challenging. It is very subtle at first, then symptoms begin to appear.

The US National Research Council has guidelines that suggest that we require one milliliter of water for every calorie we consume. That translates to approximately one half of your body weight in ounces of water consumed daily. Some scientists and medical community advisers claim that amount is too conservative, that we should drink more. For someone who is obese, very overweight or suffering from a chronic disease, they should be drinking 1 quart (32 ounces)of water for every 30 pounds of body weight.

If we look at body functions, there are four obvious ways that the body loses water; defecation, perspiration, respiration and urination. In addition, the body’s digestive process uses a huge amount of water which can further dehydrate the body if there are not sufficient water reserves. Efficient digestion is also aided by drinking sufficient water between meals to flush the digestive tract and provide enough water for bodily functions.

Obviously, the quality of the water that we use to remain healthy or regain our health is very important. For most people it means the water should be clean and safe to drink. What most people don’t know is that in order to be healthy throughout life the body needs to be as near to a neutral pH as possible and the blood absolutely needs to be between 7.35pH and 7.45pH or we die. That means the fluids in our body need to be reinforced with alkaline, ionized water.

Most of the foods that people eat form acidic ash and waste in the body, so to neutralize it we need to drink alkaline ionized water.

Another component of health that is crucial to us is negative ions. Alkaline, ionized water is full of negatively charged particles which our bodies crave. Without negative ions our bodies decline and age. Eventually our health is eroded and our organs slowly lose their efficient function.

It seems that the “struggle” for health is our attempt to rid our bodies of the positive ions we acquire from our “unnatural” diet and to get enough negative ions into our bodies. Traditionally our Paleolithic ancestors used to eat a predominantly raw food diet supplemented with river and creek water that babbled over the rocks and down waterfalls, thus becoming negatively charged and highly oxygenated.

Sadly our diets have reduced to pulling up to the local drive-through and drinking out of cans and bottles. These habits have created a society of overweight acidic bodies full of positive ions and ill health.

Fortunately the process is simple to reverse. Even if your health is OK now, you should be motivated to remain healthy throughout your life. A few changes to your lifestyle will give you valuable “life insurance.”

In the early 20th Century, the Russians discovered that negative ions were very good for human health. They postulated that if they could create negative ions in water that it would create an easier avenue to health. Through experimentation, the first water ionizers were created. The challenge even today is the bonds that water molecules form are weak. Water ionizers break up the large clusters of water into smaller clusters but they do not hold the ionic microcluster structure permanently once they are formed. So the best way to drink alkaline, ionized water is fresh from a machine that creates it. At best, it can be put into a glass bottle and it will hold its charge and microclustering for two days provided the water is filled right to the rim of the bottle. After that, the weak bonds separate and reform into larger cluster molecules and they lose their negative charge.

Even today, Dr. Emoto has shown that water has memory and can be “programmed.” The concept of alkaline, ionized water, is more and more becoming a household word as people realize the benefits of drinking this special water.

It is estimated that 75% or more of North Americans are dehydrated enough that it affects their health in a negative way. And, with that dehydration there is an acidic inflamed body. It may be “silent” inflammation now, but it will eventually rise up into the radar range and become pain or symptoms. It doesn’t seem to matter that people drink lots of water, it matters more what kind of water they drink.

In a University of Washington study, it was found that many people interpret their thirst as hunger. By giving those in the study a glass of water when they felt hungry, it stopped the hunger pangs in 98% of the people surveyed.

For the average North American, there are one or more toxic chemicals stored in their fatty tissue from drinking treated tap water. That is not even including toxins from the foods we eat, what we put on our skin and hair, what we clean our houses with or environmental pollutants. In the US, 53 million people drink water from municipal water supplies containing potentially dangerous levels of chlorine and fluoride derivatives and by-products, lead, fecal bacteria, fertilizers, pesticides, jet fuels, pharmaceuticals and other impurities associated with cancers and various sorts of metabolic dysfunction and diseases.

I remember a study a few years back where they took hair, blood and urine samples from a famous artist who ate organic, used “natural” products, drank the best water he could find, uses as few chemicals as possible in his art and he wore natural fibers. There were 48 toxic chemicals found in his body. He was really conscious about being a “back to earth” guy and quite shocked at the toxic levels in his body. Alarming, don’t you think?

Because most of us are dehydrated by various degrees, our daytime level of fatigue could be directly related to dehydration and our diets. The typical slump seems to be between 3 and 4 pm, where we reach for that sugary snack or the coffee. If we only knew that by drinking two glasses of alkaline, ionized water after lunch, we could feel much better. Water is so important that only a 2% drop in your body’s natural water level can bring on mental confusion, short term memory loss, inability to focus and sluggishness in doing simple math calculations, sequenced procedures and interpretive skills.

Also, with regards to your health, recent research shows that 8-10 glasses of alkaline, ionized water per day may significantly reduce pain levels, even in backs and joints for up to 80% of sufferers. Research is also showing that if the average person drank at least 5-16 oz glasses of alkaline, ionized water daily, that is plain alkaline, ionized water, not mixed with anything, their risk of getting breast cancer can be decreased by 79%, colon cancer by 45% and bladder cancer by 50%.

How does it work? The properties of alkaline, ionized water are unique. Drinking this water provides a quick supply of available oxygen – making the water an “antioxidant.” In other word, the water has an extra electron attached making hydroxyl ions which are negatively charged. These hydroxyl ions in the ionized water seek out and neutralize free radicals. This is very important, since free radicals are what damage our cells and bring about disease and premature aging. When the hydroxyl ions, as an antioxidant have neutralized the free radicals, the result is a body that is energized, vitalized and oxygen rich. Alkaline, ionized water helps balance the body’s pH by reducing excess cellular and body acidity, helping the body to dissolve and excrete acidic waster products more easily.

The electrolysis process that produces the alkaline, ionized water, not only produces an excess of electrons, it also reduces the cluster size of the molecules from 13 to 14 (which is regular tap water) to 5 to 7. This can happen because of the weak bonds that the water has with molecules around itself. These smaller clusters have a lower molecular weight, making the alkaline, ionized water more easily absorbed by the body. The smaller cluster size is also better able to deliver nutrient to all the cells, tissues and organs and accelerates metabolism as more and more acidic waste is eliminated from the body. So, take your vitamin and mineral supplements with alkaline, ionized water for greater absorption. Conversely, take your medications with neutral water. Normally only about 30% of your medication is absorbed by the body because of our acidic and plugged up condition. Alkaline, ionized water will increase the absorption of your medication and you may get too much.

A normal average North American diet will produce high levels of acidic waste in the body from 97% of what is eaten. We simply don’t eat enough alkaline foods, fruits and vegetables. These acids, if they are not neutralized, can cause inflammation and free radicals. They can kill healthy cells by stealing oxygen and damage them by stealing electrons. Alkaline water and food will not only dissolve these harmful acids, but they will help remove them from the body by allowing them to pass safely through the kidneys and bowels and not be stored in our joints, organs, blood vessels and fat cells.

The qualities of high alkalinity, more oxygen and lower molecular weight act as a powerful cellular detoxifier, helping the body maintain or restore its health and should be part of everyone’s daily regimen. Research in Japan since the 1950′s indicate that most chronic conditions are a result of increased waste, acidity and the resulting impaired body function and immune system.

If you are looking to feel younger, more flexible, vital and alive, or even stay that way, then the answer is clear. Try alkaline, ionized water!

Do It Yourself Home Improvement

Many of us are participating in the home improvement thing today. There are a number of great benefits to be derived from doing your own home improvement. We can save money of course. We can also design our own projects so that they typically satisfy our needs and add the personal touch exactly as we envision it.

A number of software packages are available to produce a 3D home design and show us the results before we ever spend a penny on materials. This new home design software has not only become much easier to use, while becoming much more sophisticated in what it can produce, it has also become wider ranging.

Packages are now available that target specific home projects. You will find that these products allow you to fully design a new deck, complete a new landscape design outside, modify your house interior design, or the big one will let you design a new house from start to finish.

The computer and software are great but more help is available today. The big box home improvement stores have come a long way since the original Lowes concept. These big box stores maintain a complete inventory covering every imaginable product you may require in your project. The also carry a large educated staff that is most often quite willing to offer you assistance. That is good but they also appear to be well founded in the knowledge required to provide you with assistance.

If that is not good enough, the big box home improvement stores also conduct routine seminars to educate you regarding specific products. All this assistance comes at no cost to the customer. The intention is to encourage and help you to complete your own home improvement.

Not only will these projects save you money but they will also increase the value of your home. It is quite practical for the average handyman to purchase a fix it up house, do some small improvements itself and then resell the house at a profit.

A wide range of near professional quality tools is available at your home improvement stores. Competition in the marketplace has been beneficial to the consumer. You can now purchase excellent quality tools to complete any phase of the job from preparation of raw, rough lumber to spray painting the completed project. All this is available at very competitive pricing.

One final benefit to this whole experience may be the chance to work together with the rest of your family. It will never be lost time when you pass on some of your knowledge and abilities to children and grand children. A world of opportunity is available.