Is it really possible for young learners to effectively use a learning management system (LMS)? This is a common question administrators and educational practitioners ask when considering LMS adoption at the district level.
Through my work with educators across the country, I know the number of elementary school districts and administrators turning to LMS adoption is increasing for all grades—preparing students at a young age to use the technology they will need to master for high school, college, and beyond.
Here are three reasons why districts should consider adopting an LMS for elementary and how they can begin technological integration for all classrooms.
1. Young learners are already surrounded by technology
Since young learners are still developing their reading, writing, and fine-motor skills, the notion is they are not developed enough to benefit from using an LMS. But young students encounter technology in every facet of their lives and school should be no different. The market is flooded with apps and games to teach everything from making music to developing vocabulary. Rather than avoiding robust academic technology, educators should look to create engaging experiences through the tools young students are most familiar with today.
According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, some LMS vendors whose platforms are used throughout K-12 recognize that connected students tend to succeed academically. In order to lay a strong foundation for college and career ready skills, these vendors are making advancements in their products to better engage younger learners.
Schools are realizing that a strong foundation for college and career readiness must start with their youngest students.
“Elementary teachers are often concerned about the time they are spending at the start of the school year helping students log in to the LMS,” says Sarah Finizio, Schoology product manager for the academic portal team at Denver (CO) Public Schools. “What they don’t realize is that many of the students are already familiar with how to login to other online tools and adapt to a new technology tool fairly quickly.” Her observation is that vendors are already making advancements in their products to better engage younger learners, and these changes are helping mitigate the apprehension that some elementary teachers express when using technology with their students. She continues to be impressed with how quickly and easily young students master the basics of using an LMS to access important learning materials.