Edtech has always been fundamental in creating a dynamic classroom environment with continuous opportunities for student interaction. Since school closures, however, it became central to the day-to-day function of teaching and learning, with educators relying on technology to deliver lessons.
But the prominence of edtech in your school and IT strategy over the past 12 months shouldn’t be considered a short-term necessity. To foster greater student engagement in the classroom and unlock exciting new activities and lesson styles, edtech needs to be a long-term priority. Students expect opportunities to use digital tools, and staff can leverage efficiencies edtech brings for their productivity.
So how can you harness the role of technology in a modern, future-proof classroom? Here are three tips for long-lasting value:
1. Identify and integrate effective edtech
To maximise edtech’s potential, you need to use the most effective tools. Educators should draw on their extensive experience with the tools that have proved valuable over time, and ensure any which have supported them in hybrid learning are transferred into the classroom rather than being left behind.
At the heart of your classroom, interactive front-of-class displays like the ActivPanel are designed to equip teachers with tools to directly engage students with their lesson content. Rather than being merely a screen, ActivPanels provide in-built features like device-mirroring and multi-point touch, so they act as an exciting digital platform where students can enjoy a stimulating hands-on experience.
Giving students more ownership not only leads to modern, digitally rich learning, but also alleviates pressure on the always-on teacher. Edtech tools can offer teaching efficiencies, from real-time assessment feedback to seamlessly sharing content across student devices. So effective edtech deepens students’ access to content and collaboration in the classroom, as well as helping streamline the processes that monitor their attainment.
2. Support the social component
Your edtech use should revolve around nurturing the social connection which makes the classroom environment unparalleled — and which staff and students alike missed during school closures. If your school is going to continue delivering school objectives, you should incorporate tech in activities based around collaboration and communication.
The greater interactivity of a hands-on learning experience helps students apply their learning in a more tangible context, bringing them closer to complex topics such as by visualising 3D models on a front-of-class display. With the teacher able to show them these connections between theory and practice, guiding them through their access to the content, they ground student engagement in an intimate level of support.
As well as opportunities for problem-solving and teamwork, edtech also creates points of connection for students to engage with the wider world. Rather than being confined by the classroom’s four walls, you can use a front-of-class display like the ActivPanel to livestream global locations — from inside zoos, to world heritage sites — to transport your class outside. Even if school trips aren’t possible, therefore, you can still give students visceral learning experiences mapped to the curriculum.
3. Formulate a focused IT strategy
The new modern classroom should be underpinned by digital-first teaching. Your IT strategy should therefore focus on facilitating a seamless digital backdrop to support teachers’ preferred pedagogical practices. This will provide flexibility to adapt however situations change, and to meet diverse staff and student needs.
So what should be included in your IT strategy? Utilise the knowledge and expertise of the school’s IT managers to track edtech trends, so you can identify purpose-built tech over low-impact flashy fads. This will ensure there’s a strong foundation teachers can rely on, so they don’t need to worry about wasting time with ineffective tools or being overwhelmed by too many.
With ever-increasing importance on strategic budget spending, maximise Return on Investment (ROI) by investing in tools providing long-lasting value, so classroom equipment is tech-savvy but high-impact. This will help satisfy all stakeholders so classroom edtech doesn’t become deprioritised as a less valuable strain on budgets.
These three tips demonstrate only some of the extensive uses of edtech in the classroom. A modern, future-proof classroom will embrace these opportunities, so teaching doesn’t become dominated by less varied, conventional practices. Find out more about aligning the role of edtech in the new modern classroom in our guide, and request a free ActivPanel demo to experience a truly immersive front-of-class display for yourself.