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The teacher's surveyed at the elementary level acknowledged that their usage of computers in the classroom was quite limited, and suggested that this was due largely to their unfamiliarity with the potential benefits the computer had to offer in the classroom environment. This also coincides with information gathered from the literature review, specifically the work of Notar, Wilson & Yunker (2003) again who point out that teachers tend to teach in a similar manner to their own education.
There was significant interest expressed however on the part of the young children surveyed for the study, with a majority of respondents claiming that they were interested in using computers more in the classroom. Comments such as "I think I can benefit from more computer time" and "Computers can help us communicate" suggested that children even at the elementary level were aware of the potential benefits of computers in the classroom.
With regard to the first research question, the researcher concludes that computer usage in the elementary setting has not yet widely changed the manner in which learning occurs in a positive way, although they have the potential to. Other information gathered from the literature review suggests that in particular, the use of computers in the classroom at the elementary level may facilitate second language learning and help facilitate intercultural communications between international elementary communities (Genishi, McCollu & Strand, 1985; Gluck, 2001; Liu, Moore, Graham & Lee, 2002).
With regard to the second research question regarding student perceptions of learning, students seem to have a positive association with computers and a positive perception of their potential to benefit classroom learning, even at the elementary level.
The information gathered from this research suggests that educators must do more to interact with students and acquire more comprehensive understanding of the potential benefits of computer usage in the classroom. As technology continues to advance computers will increasingly become integrated at all levels of learning. There are already movements that are working to develop computer applications at the pre-school level. For computers to be beneficial to educators and students, their potential uses at all levels of learning must first be adequately understood. The information reaped from the literature review and teacher surveys suggests that though computers are present in the classroom at the elementary level, they are not yet being embraced by educators or used to their fullest potential. A learning curve seems to exist not only for students but also for educators. Thus more emphasis should be placed on learning the potential uses of computers in the classrooms, and educators must be instructed as to the potential uses of computers in the classroom.
There is also evidence suggesting that further studies should be conducted regarding the potential benefits of computer use for second language learning and cultural diversity applications in the future. Some of the information gathered from the literature review suggests that computers can be used as an invaluable tool for fostering intercultural and international communication within the classroom. In a globally diverse world and marketplace, this potential benefit must be acknowledged.
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