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9 Technology Tools To Engage Students In The Classroom

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Technology distracts students, right? Keeps them from focusing?

One solution is to ban phones and computers from the classroom. Another solution is to harness their tech-savvy and engage students with online tools that will help them complete assignments while still engaging them electronically. Whether they’re working on a research essay, a presentation, a science project, or a math report, there are ample tools available to make the process more engaging for students.

Think about it–if students are growing up in a world that requires them to be tech-savvy, then shouldn’t tech play a big role in their classroom experience? Here are 9 of my top picks for a tool to engage students in the classroom.

9 Technology Tools To Engage Students In The Classroom

1. White Noise

Depending on what you want the students to engage in–you, one another, content, an assignment, etc.–they need to be able to focus, and the classroom isn’t always the easiest places to do that. Background noise cannot only drown out excess noise but more helpfully as students concentrate, there is less noise because they’re concentrating. Neat trick, huh?

2. Cold Turkey

Students probably won’t love this one but it’s a useful tool you can use to mitigate the number of multitasking students can do on their computers. Cold Turkey is a tool that allows you to block certain websites or the internet in general so that students can focus on their tasks. Even having students turn it on for half of a period for some focuses in-class writing

time will make a difference in terms of their productivity.

3. Kahoot!

Kahoot! is a handy tool that students can use to create in-class questionnaires and quizzes. This is handy for obtaining data for graphing assignments, data for research essays, and feedback from their classmates. Kahoot! is compatible with multiple devices and has a game-like feel that will help keep students interested.

4. Venngage

With so much focus being given to data analytics these days, data literacy is a useful skill for students to learn. Whether your students have collected their own data or they’ve collected it from other sources, being able to visualize their data in an infographic is a highly useful skill. Infographics appeal to both visual learners and textual learners. Venngage offers a selection of infographic templates that students can customize.

5. Trello

Because so many students are in the habit of multitasking, a good skill to teach them is how to organize and streamline their assignments. Trello is a free and super easy-to-use tool students can use to create workflow charts. Multiple students can be added to the same board; great for collaboration on projects. 

6. Plickers

This is a tool for teachers, to help assess students’ understanding of concepts and their engagement with the material. Teachers can project questions onto their screen using while students answer them in real time. Students’ answers show up on the teacher’s phone screen, and teachers can see which students got answers right and which didn’t. This gives teachers an accurate picture of how students are following the information, and adjust their lessons accordingly.

7. Nearpod

Create interactive lessons, assess students on the fly, and see data and student response in real-time. Students that can ask questions and receive feedback at any time are more likely to be engaged.

8. Prezi

Presentations are a core part of the curriculum but let’s face it, PowerPoint isn’t terribly engaging. Prezi allows students to create presentations that are more creative and exciting than was PP has to offer. Not only will this make the presentation creation process more interesting for students, but it will also make watching presentations more interesting as well. Plus, Prezi presentations are published publicly on students’ accounts, so their classmates can access them later to check their notes.

9. Class Dojo

This is a fun tool to gamify the classroom. Students make their own avatars, gain and lose points based on classroom behaviour, discussion approaches, and other soft skills agreed upon by the teacher and the class. Teachers can also use Class Dojo to take attendance and create graphs that breakdown the information for teachers. Not only will this tool encourage students to uphold class values, but it will also provide key metrics to help teachers adjust their teaching tactics accordingly.

posted Mar 19, 2019 by Rainsey

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Edtech company Clever has revolutionized the time it takes young students to log into online educational platforms and applications. Instead of fumbling with keys to type a lengthy password, they simply scan the QR code on their Clever Badge for instant access.

QR Codes Used in the Classroom To Help Young Students Access Technology Faster

At an age when kids are just learning to tie their shoes, time is essential in every K–2 classroom. This innovation saves teachers up to 20 minutes— the time it can take to get all their students on the home page—which means more time spent on engaging activities and personalized learning.

According to a recent USA Today article, Clever Badges are used in 4,585 schools in the United States. Clever, Inc. streamlines the process of finding effective edtech apps for classrooms. Their database connects school districts with over 200 compatible apps for their teachers to choose from.

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Mixed-reality and automated classroom tools create opportunities for students to develop connections with their peers and build essential soft skills.

New educational technology is revolutionizing how K–12 students and teachers engage with each other in and out of school. 

Online communities are certainly not new. For decades social media, online forums and messaging boards brought people together around common interests and shared goals. 

The explosion of new digital solutions, however, ushered in new possibilities for immersive experiences that challenge traditional notions of school communities. 

Augmented and virtual reality and voice-activated technologies are not only helping schools meet current, prevailing social expectations but also are allowing K–12 communities to expand beyond real-world limitations. 

VR Adds New Immersive Elements to Videoconferencing

Schools are a place to foster leadership, empathy, problem-solving and communication skills. When used appropriately, classroom technologies can promote the development of these competencies while meeting students where they are. 

Virtual reality brings a dynamic layer to the student experience, teaching students critical social skills in engaging and interactive ways. Immersive programs can open rural schools to the global community or make collaborative problem-solving and communication more fluid and intuitive. 

For example, students can now give their best friend a hug or high-five, compete in a soccer match or harmonize in a virtual band even when separated by an ocean. Teachers can take classes to far away locations, and regular school programing and activities can include students from anywhere in the world.

Virtual Tools Promote Inclusivity in Schools

Digital avatars put students on an even playing field, which can boost their self-confidence and help them learn to accept the differences in others. 

In a virtual world, students are also not limited by their physical abilities, language proficiencies or resource availability. Students can join in collective cultural experiences, such as dances and performances, with schools from all corners of the globe. 

Together, these technologies blur the line between the digital realm and the physical one—redefining how students talk to each other and think of social bonds. 

K–12 Schools Can Use Digital Spaces to Gamify Events

At the beginning of February, as many as 10 million gamers logged in to Fortnite, one of the most popular games right now, for a live virtual concert with performance artist DJ Marshmello. 

Participants celebrated stageside with other avatars as the DJ cheered them on. Others floated through the air, thanks to altered gravity in the virtual world. The performance, complete with real-life stage visuals, lasers and oversized holograms, transported concertgoers to an exclusive experience only possible in a digital space. 

Those who tuned in to the concert were more than spectators; they were active participants, present in the crescendo of a new kind of virtual community.

The growing popularity of interactive, collective technologies also calls into question our traditional notions of place — from what boundaries define the campus to assigned seating, individual desks and lockers. 

Activating the classroom through technology integration lays the foundation of a more expanded, global classroom that empowers students to better relate to themselves, each other and the modern world around them.