Although I believe technology integration to be a crucial piece to our students' future in order to best prepare them for a successful adulthood, I have definitely come across my fair share of teachers who don't agree. While sitting in on an interview panel for my school this past year, I asked the prospective veteran teacher how she felt about technology integration. She simply responded with "The internet is great, don't get me wrong, but I've found students love to read from paper too." I felt that there was so much limitation in her understanding to what technology IS and DOES. Firstly, she merely considered the internet to be technology in the classroom and disregarded any other technological device teachers can get their hands on these days. Secondly, her limited understanding only led her to the internet as provided a text to be read. That is one of the obstacles to technology integration at the elementary level, the teachers have a limited understanding of what it is and can do. I believe that this limited understanding comes from how quickly everything in the technological world changes. Robyler writes how everything changes quickly. Teachers who aren't tech-savvy will just get used to a program when it updates and changes the way it works, leaving that teacher frazzled and exhausted.
Another obstacle mentioned in the reading is if a topic isn't considered as important, such as Social Studies, then there may be less programs or software developed for that subject. As an elementary teacher, I'm expected to integrate Social Studies into my main curriculum. If I don't teach reading strategies to a Social Studies topic, chances are there won't be enough time to fully cover either subject well. However, being limited in my choices for Social Studies can also limit my technology integration for Reading and Writing as well. However, part of my job as a professional educator is to take the good, bad, and ugly - and then make the best of it.
Finally, one of the biggest hindrances I've found in my own teaching career is the cost that sometimes comes with the technology. My school this year did buy a Math program with a great online piece. Teachers and students have many options online to integrate into instruction and practice. This program, however, cost a lot more in order to have rights for the digital side. Another example is Buncee, which was fun to use and I loved, but have no funding to cover in my classroom. This year, I was lucky and inquired if there was room in the school budget to purchase my classroom an online writing and testing tool. However, many things my school can't purchase and I find myself spending my own money.
Overall, I feel education is moving in the right direction. It is clear that technology is the future and the students need to comfortable using it. Although there will always be obstacles, there are always more ways to overcome these things and improve.
Roblyer, M. (2016). Integrating educational technology into teaching (7th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.