Audio visual teaching technologies have been used in some form for decades, but in the 21st century they are used to influence classroom learning like never before. To use audio visual teaching effectively, teachers should incorporate it to present information in ways that will help students understand. When possible, they should also allow students access to audio visual teaching materials in order to promote active learning.
Teachers can use audio visual technologies in ways that make the content of their lessons more understandable and memorable. On a very basic level, it is easy to see how students will better understand the relative positions of Israel and Jordan if they can look at a map, rather than if they are simply told the information. Likewise, if video footage of a historical event is available, it can help students understand and remember the significance of the event better than just reading about it.
Audio visual teaching can also be used to help students evaluate their own performances. If the teacher records students giving a presentation, for instance, they can go back and watch themselves to see their own strengths and weaknesses. A student might notice a distracting, repetitive gesture or discover that he or she needs to pause longer after telling a joke. Similarly, advanced medical students might watch recordings of themselves practicing surgeries in order to refine their techniques.
Teachers can also allow students access to multimedia technologies in order to involve them actively in their own learning. For instance, if a group of students makes a presentation on the computer, they must decide how graphics and other media can add to the textual information. This requires students not only to recite facts but also to consider how those facts might be represented visually.
Some audio visual teaching resources also allow for a great deal of personalization in learning. Computer programs for math, for instance, allow each student to work at his or her own pace. They may also provide problems that concentrate on areas where the student most needs improvement. Often containing puzzles or games along with the content, these programs may be more interesting to the student that simply drilling on multiplication facts.