The classroom has changed dramatically in recent years. Sure, the overall concept is the same: a number of desks all facing the same way with a teacher at the front and a presentation board, but now you’ll find technology throughout the room too, such as Promethean’s ActivPanel interactive display.
In some cases it’s as simple as a digital whiteboard at the front of the classroom, but many use this in combination with learning management systems and other smart technology such as laptops or tablets.
This technological revolution has changed the face of the classroom forever and provides a number of benefits for students and teachers alike. We’re going to cover these benefits to the learning environment and show you how education technology can improve your classroom.
Overcome today’s challenges
While many of the challenges faced in the classroom are the same as they always have been, whether it’s simply keeping kids interested or helping nurture the best and brightest minds, there are a number of more modern challenges that teachers have to compete with. Growing class sizes, social media and kids’ own access to smartphones can make teaching difficult, but those same challenges highlight where the opportunity lies.
Technology like smart panels can be used to greatly enhance the learning experience for children of any age and help teachers overcome these challenges by engaging students and mixing up how they learn.
The statistical reason for introducing technology to your classroom
Teachers talk at length about how technology has improved their lessons, from planning through to delivery, and there are a number of studies to back this up. One study shows that 96% of teachers believe technology has a positive impact on how children participate and learn in lessons.
Another study has highlighted that students themselves see a real benefit, with 60% of them saying digital learning technology has improved their grades.
Both these studies, and others like them, found that technology allowed teachers to plan and deliver better, more varied lessons; while students had better access to learning resources and were finding technology helpful in the classroom.
So what are the true benefits of technology in education, and how can you access them?
6 ways technology benefits your students
Some of the biggest benefits of technology in education include:
Make learning more accessible
One of the biggest benefits of technology in education is how it’s improved accessibility. From allowing students to access classrooms remotely, to making lessons more inclusive, technology has helped. New technology and apps have been developed specifically to help students who struggle with learning in more traditional ways.
Internet access also helps students with homework assignments when their teachers can’t be there to assist.
Implement different learning styles & lesson types
Every student learns differently. Not every student finds a teacher reading out of a textbook useful, and using technology can help students discover the best learning environments for them. Technology allows for new styles like microlearning, the delivery of content in short bursts, or for students to use video, drawing and other interactive educational activities to improve their retention.
Gamification can turn subjects that are typically viewed as more difficult or intimidating, like Maths and Science, into creative and interesting problems to be solved. In short, gaming elements can make learning fun and help with knowledge absorption.
Improve student engagement
One of the biggest plus points to tech in the classroom is the opportunity to improve engagement. Combining a variety of learning tools like interactive whiteboards, laptops, tablets and other smart devices keeps students engaged in the lesson and encourages active participation. This improves knowledge retention, thereby improving the performance of students across the board.
Active participation stops the focus being on students passively taking in knowledge and involves them directly in the learning process. Technology allows the use of devices such as VR to enable students to engage in activities that would be dangerous, or see places they’d never normally see. Games like Assassin’s Creed: Origins have an education mode that can be used to let students explore ancient Egypt. It’s all about keeping your students involved and offering variety.
Optimise teacher’s time
It’s not just students who benefit from technology in schools. Accessing a learning management system and educational software allows teachers to improve lesson plans, access resources, mark work faster and generally get the most out of their time. This time can either be channeled back into the classroom – and their students – or help them have proper downtime when they’re at home.
Of course, teachers benefit from more than just the automation of a number of painful admin tasks. When you teach and assess students using technology, you can use analytics software to gain a better understanding of both individual students and a whole classroom’s development. This can then be used to create tailored plans for individual students to help them really improve.
Encourage student collaboration
Developing collaboration skills is important for later life. Technology in schools helps bolster collaboration in a number of ways. A number of lessons can be planned that use apps and group tasks which encourage your students to work together and allow students to do so in several creative ways. You can set tasks that include students in small groups from one class or even across year groups.
Working with technology also encourages students to help each other and do simple problem-solving. Educators have observed it’s not just the tasks themselves but the actual use of technology that helps develop collaboration skills.
Improve digital skills for teachers and students alike
Technology is so ingrained into everyday life that it’s now vital to develop these skills at school. Having a strong ability with technology will serve students well when looking for jobs, as many workplaces will rely on student knowledge prior to employment. Using online platforms and smart technology in education settings helps students become comfortable with an array of skills and confident in their abilities to problem-solve issues or learn new software packages
The same benefit is also true for teachers. Using smart devices and educational software packages will only improve their own digital skills.
Get the most out of your class with interactive whiteboards and software
Whatever way you want to teach your students, keeping them involved in the process is important. When your students come to a classroom and feel like an active participant, it’s only going to help. Promethean creates world-leading interactive whiteboards designed with the classroom in mind. Not only that, but we set the standard on educational software to help you get the most out of your smart technology.
Interested in learning more? Visit the virtual demo page to request a live demo of the Promethean interactive display.
If you have enjoyed this guide, why not check out some of our other expert interactive whiteboard resources.