High-Tech That Are Making Classrooms Smarter
Technology is a driving force in education, opening up many doors and preparing students for what lies ahead, not behind,” said Kirsty Kelly, Primary Years Program Coordinator at the Canadian International School in Singapore. “It allows for greater differentiation, individualized learning, real world integration, and varied assessments.”
Today’s schools are changing and the incorporation of digital advances into the classroom was inevitable and necessary. To prepare students for their future, education must utilize the most advanced tools and techniques available.
“Stuffing schools with high tech tools isn’t the answer to offering dynamic learning experiences,” said Danish Kurani and Zoe Balaconis in an article for EdSurge, a website about the intersection between technology and education. Kurani is an architect and designer and her colleague Balaconis is the co-founder of Misadventures, a women’s outdoor adventure magazine. The two led a pilot program testing classroom designs with a public school in Columbine, Colorado.
The driving concept of the program was “new learning needs new environments.” Their pilot program redesigned a classroom to utilize technology and new teaching techniques to make education more “personalized, adaptive and real-world” focused. The new classroom had a “Skype Mountain,” a tiered sitting area where “students can sit, congregate, and connect with the world.
The classroom also included small discussion areas, individual, pupil directed, learning zones, and large learning galleries that can be updated to fit whatever topic is being taught.
This pilot program is one of many experimenting with new layouts for learning that will make sure that the classrooms of the future look substantially different than the ones of the past.
Projectors on their surface are a simple technology that has been around for decades. Historically used to project lecture notes or multimedia presentations, these classroom cornerstones can do so much more.
BiJie Interactive Box projector displays interactive images on almost any flat surface. The flexible projector, as displayed in the video below, can be hooked up to a wide range of devices allowing instructors and pupils to fully utilize it.
A step beyond interactive projectors are the wide range of “smartboards” being utilized in classrooms.
Some smartboards operate just like a whiteboard, allowing a person to write on them with real or digital markers. Smartboards then surpass their simple whiteboard ancestors by recording what is written or turning a digital marker line into a tangible visual element.