Technologies that students find engaging are extending the classroom beyond its physical walls and the school timetable, making it accessible anywhere any time. Emerging technologies provide the opportunity for teachers to question what a classroom is and who comprises a class. When and how should class members attend class? Does a class need to involve members who meet in an actual place? Do they have to meet during the school day? The author illustrates what the effective use of some of these emerging technologies looks like, using the examples of podcasting, discussion boards and instant messaging, which he has applied in biology education. The use of such technologies have been successful for the author in his own teaching practice because it makes school relevant and engaging, meeting students on their own turf to provide them with an educational platform on which to interact. In this way technology establishes a genuine learning community of students and teachers, grouped not by geography but by interest. [Author abstract, ed]
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