Can Technology Help Students Like Learning?

Cognitive scientist Daniel Willingham wrote a book called Why Don’t Students Like School?  He boils the answer down to this: Students don’t like school because school isn’t set up to help them learn very well.

Why Students Don't Like SchoolWillingham says that under the right conditions, everyone enjoys learning. It gives a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. However, learning something that is too difficult is not enjoyable. It’s frustrating. And, learning something that is too easy is not enjoyable either. It’s boring.

Willingham writes, “The problem must be easy enough to be solved yet difficult enough to take some mental effort.” He calls this the “sweet spot” for learning and notes that technology has potential to help adjust learning experiences so all students can work in their “sweet spot”.

Beyond adjusting challenges to be in the “sweet spot”,  technology can be used to support other research-supported elements of teaching and learning that are often difficult in classrooms, such as:

  • providing students with immediate feedback;
  • affording opportunities for improved awareness and understanding;
  • encouraging positive teacher-student relationships.

Of course, to work this way, the technology must be intentionally designed with these elements in mind.

Lexercise has worked hard to develop an online platform with all these elements and more.  A highly qualified clinician provides interactive and multisensory structured literacy therapy using attention-grabbing tools that improve the student’s awareness and understanding. Immediate feedback is provided by the clinician in face-to-face sessions, as well as in the daily, online practice games that the clinician customizes to be in the student’s “sweet spot”.

If your child struggles with reading, writing or spelling, the most important first step is a professional assessment. No matter where you live, your child can be tested and treated individually, face-to-face, online, by the clinical educators at Lexercise. Learn more here, or contact me directly at or 1-919-747-4557.


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Sandie Barrie Blackley, MA/CCC

MA/CCC - Cofounder and CKO

Sandie is a speech-language pathologist with more than 30 years of experience in the private practice sector. She is Visiting Assistant Professor of Communication Sciences & Disorders at University of North Carolina Greensboro, and founder/owner of the Language & Learning Clinic, PLLC, a private practice in Elkin, NC, and Greensboro, NC, specializing in communication disorders, including disorders of reading and written language.