by extramarks - Academics - July 4, 2017 The New-Age Teacher ‘Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is the most important.’ Bill Gates ‘Is a teacher irrelevant in a digital classroom?’ We all have either asked or have heard this question a million times. With the digitization of classrooms, the role of teachers has become even more crucial. As Bas Verhart, co-founder of THNK correctly shares – “The role of teachers is of facilitating, inspiring, storytelling, empowering and really seeing the classroom as a team of young individuals, as well as orchestrating the energy in a group. The role of the teacher is extremely important.” In the age of modern technology, where content is readily and easily accessible, the status of teachers has moved up than going down. They are the ones who guide the learners to use the internet wisely and help in the practical application of the knowledge grasped. As mentors, they know how to keep the learners engrossed both in the class and outside of it. They understand that technology is not a hurdle but is a tool for improving the learning process. In modern classrooms, they utilize opportunities to personalize education and use content more efficiently. As facilitators, they use appropriate resources and opportunities to create a learning environment that allows each child to construct his or her own knowledge. Teachers are in tune with their students and know how to pace lessons and provide meaningful projects that actively engage students and promote quality education. New-age teachers facilitate not only in-class learning but also after-class progress. Teachers understand that now it is not possible to teach only from textbooks and to rely on the same worksheets and methods year after year. They agree that for education to be engaging, it has to be personalized; hence, they prefer to use technology to achieve it. New-age teachers, rather than restricting the usage of smart devices, use them as a tool to make learning engaging. In smart classrooms, teachers prefer using technology to appraise learners’ understanding through online examinations. Multiple choice questions are readily shared at the end of a session on students’ hand-held devices. Instead of meticulously grading piles of notebooks, teachers are able to grade tests in a few clicks. Teachers in the 21st-century classrooms, don various hats of guiding force with natural ease. They are facilitators, mentors, moderators and guides. They take up multiple responsibilities as and when required to ensure that the learning process is productive.