Empowering all students with electronic devices
Technology is helping teachers to expand beyond linear, text-based learning and to engage students who learn best in other ways. Its role in schools has evolved from a contained “computer class” into a versatile learning tool that could change how we demonstrate concepts, assign projects and assess progress.
In 2014, The King’s Academy led the way by requiring all secondary students to bring a laptop or tablet to class. Throughout the year, faculty have on-going training.
One way to encourage student engagement is by using electronic devices that allow students to record their answers to multiple choice questions and allow you to instantly display the results. The anonymity encourages participation, and their answers help the teacher know when further discussion is needed. Use of clickers can also serve as a catalyst for discussion.
Technology can support student collaboration on creating new knowledge, reflecting on what they are learning, or working together to achieve a deeper understanding of course material. Here at TKA, we us a powerful Learning Management System to engage students and challenge them to collaborate with their peers.
How can we make the best use of the classroom time we have with our students? Sometimes a great way to move them toward higher levels of understanding is to move the lecture out of the classroom, and use in-person time for interactions that require applying, synthesizing, and creating. “Flipping” doesn’t have to use technology, but tools such as videos, podcasts, online quizzes and the like can help in and out of class activity work together.
We’re only beginning to explore their many possibilities of using technology in the classroom. Students now use various forms of electronic devices to organize their work, record lectures, research information, and examine collections.
Below are just a few examples of how faculty and students use technology every day:
- A state-of-the-art television studio, “Studio 70”, featuring the latest in 4k production equipment.
- Library databases support a wide range of research, and students use the school’s computers or their own device for research and writing.
- Many teachers incorporate blogs, wikis, and Moodle forums into the curriculum.
- Teachers in the elementary utilize handheld voting devices to help assess the students progress immediately.
- The elementary S.T.E.M. program uses the VEX Robotics system in groups to solve complex problems.
- Social Studies teachers routinely use classroom projectors in their daily instruction—to view websites, display student work, view PowerPoint presentations, and watch DVDs.