“Today, most people associate “educational technology” with computers and the Internet,” however in America’s primary and secondary schools educational technology encompasses much more than computers and has roots that extend back several centuries. Blackboards and books are now taken for granted and are assumed to be part of every student’s educational experience. In their day, these “technologies” were viewed as radical and revolutionary teaching and learning tools. (Russell, 2006, p.137)
Education in ancient Greece stands out during this era though, because of its diversity. It was the Greeks who first created what we would now call primary and secondary schools. There was also a lot of emphasis from an early age on physical education, which was considered necessary for improving one’s appearance, preparation for war, and good health at an old age (Plutarch, 1927).
Over thousands of years and across the continents, various surfaces have been used as a medium for writing, including wax-covered writing boards (by the Romans), clay tablets (in the middle east), strips of bark from trees (in Indonesia, Tibet and the Americas), thick palm-like leaves (in South east Asia) and parchment, made of animal skin (common across the ancient world).
To aid the learning process, educational technologies, such as slates, hornbooks, blackboards, and books were introduced.
Over time, a variety of technologies such as film, radio, television, teaching machines, microcomputers and the Internet have been introduced to schools, each sparking controversy about its usefulness for schooling and effectiveness as a teaching and learning aid.