3 Crucial Ed Tech Terms Explained
Walking into a school today, you’ll quite often be confronted with interactive white boards, not blackboards. Individual tablets for learning, not a wheelie case full of laptops. Apps, videos and online resources are now specifically created to assist the development of young people in schools today. There’s no question that technology in school is here to stay. Moreover, it’s here to improve engagement, diversify learning experiences and innovate teaching styles for the foreseeable future.
However, not everyone takes up new technology with the confidence of young teenagers. After all, they grew up with such devices and the incorporation of them into everyday life is less of struggle and more second nature. We aim to simplify the process of using educational apps in the classroom by reviewing, rating and providing resources for best use within the classroom. However, with new technology comes new vocabulary, and when that vocabulary is attached to the education sector you can bet a whole lot of acronyms and phrases will slip into the staff room with it!
To keep you clued up so you can at least pretend you know what you’re talking about, here’s 3 common EdTech terms explained!
Every teacher tries to accommodate the personal needs of their students, but when you see upwards of 120 students each day there are times it just doesn’t seem possible. Technology can accommodate more direct interaction between teachers and pupils, with apps in particular now able to assess the level of individual children so as to best tailor work to their particular needs. There are hundreds of apps designed for just this, covering things such as reading comprehension, times tables revision and practice French oral questions. Students who struggle on particular topics have access to an endless supply of quizzes and questions. The resource doesn’t seem to dry up with technology. There are also tools that help ascertain how children learn best, whether that’s visually, auditory, or even through gamification methods. Part of teaching moving forward will be to develop a mix of digital learning tools to best accommodate all learners.
No, it’s not a classroom with the chairs on the ceiling and a whiteboard on the floor! A ‘flipped classroom’ is one where a teacher can easily and inexpensively screencast their own videos and online lessons to a student’s personal device, including lesson plans and topical lectures from anywhere in the world. The videos include narration, whiteboards and images, so it tends to suit children with varied learning preferences. Teachers assign homework using apps or online management systems, which is where the flipped element comes in. Teachers ‘flip’ the traditional learning method, reserving classroom for facilitated group projects and individualised instruction instead. Students are found to progress and absorb information more at their own place. Could you end up teaching from bed? Who knows…
Curriculum Aligned Apps
These are apps which are not just created for their learning potential, but are based around key National Curriculum objectives, making sure that what you’re using in class is hitting government standards and is relevant to your teaching objectives. The future potential for teachers is that time spent lesson planning; including searching for relevant apps, finding resources for those apps and making sure it’s all curriculum aligned, is cut dramatically as this has all been done for you. For instance, when searching an app catalogue that specifically curates app based on curriculum alignment, teachers can see which curriculum objectives the app fulfils, and can even download bespoke lesson plans based around that app. Anything that makes integrating technology easier is a good thing, so we think this could be a real game changer in the teaching world!