ELB Education – Technology in Education Newsletter Term 3, 2017.
Whether your students are aged four or fourteen, we’ve all seen technology captivate and distract in the learning environment.
One of the keys to using technology for the greater good in education (and at home) is to recognise the benefits of the digital age on the developing mind. While we can certainly attest to the power of a screen in soothing a fussy child or moody teen; interactive flat panel technology can also open possibilities for learning we couldn’t even imagine before. Let’s take a look at some of these:
Taking kids to new places
Children around the world can be linked through interactive technology. An emphasis on responsible global citizenship develops empathy, imagination, knowledge and unity in children and adults alike. Students in your classroom can connect live with students in other classrooms, create content for others to respond to, or explore new places using high-quality video and images.
Promoting independence and innovation
Interactive technology allows kids and teens to make their way through self-marking activities and linked learning opportunities. The possibilities are plentiful, from ‘choose-your-own-adventure’ tasks to creating a game for other kids to play. In our experience, any child who is encouraged to innovate using technology is a child better prepared for flourishing in our digital world.
We’ve seen this work beautifully in a History classroom, where students were given an end of semester project with a broad focus on what they had learned. These students created visually engaging, delightfully original and fascinating resources for other students to explore and learn from.
Tailoring learning to specific skills and interests
Is your child or student a keen artist? Let them explore their drawing using a touchscreen – their work can be saved and accessed whenever, and the variety of textures and colours available for them to use can be almost infinite.
Likewise, a child who is a keen mathematician can enjoy a variety of interactive games to extend their learning.
Optimism and an enthusiasm for learning new things are all you need to get started using interactive flat panels in your classroom. After all, support from other teachers and parents is only a click away – and we have advances in technology to thank for that!
Marking, marking, marking…
Piles of work to grade can be the unhappy cherry-on-top of a very busy day for many teachers. Here’s a quick guide for using interactive technology in peer and self-marking:
Share Google Docs (or Sheets, Forms, Slides, etc.)
This one almost goes without saying – we can use the power of immediate information sharing to allow students to instantly comment on each other’s work. A quick review of marking etiquette might be helpful – remind students what constructive criticism looks like and adopt the “compliment sandwich” technique if necessary, where students give two positive comments for every criticism.
Use Prowise Presenter
Presenter’s building blocks allow you to create a self-marking activity, where touching an object or answer will give the student immediate feedback in the form of a green (correct) or red (incorrect) object border and corresponding sound.
This technique works well with early learners and in subjects with clear answers, including mathematics and geography.
Assign a Project
Ask your students to create interactive quizzes and activities for other students. Before you know it, you’ll have 25 tasks ready to go.
This idea works particularly well during exam revision time, where kids can revise by creating a quiz.
Giving students more responsibility for their learning helps them to develop independent thinking and personal motivation. You’ll also be teaching yourself to work smarter, not harder!
Teachers often forget how tired their students can feel sitting down for much of the day. This is where brain breaks can prove helpful – and fun.
Prowise Presenter provides a range of tools and activities that can be used as a basis for 3-5 minute brain breaks during lessons. Keep reading for some ideas you can use in class today.
Click on the Tools icon – under Others you will find some tricky quizzes to test your geographical knowledge. Answer these questions as a class, celebrating with your favourite dance move when you respond correctly and commiserating with 5 jumping jacks when you’re wrong. This one is sure to get the blood moving!
Under Media, click Illustrations and Symbols. In The Arts you’ll find an illustration of a face with a variety of expressions – you can use this face as a base for your students to embellish with bowties, glasses, hats, facial hair, and more!
The hourglass tool can be found in Tools > Tools. Set the timer to 3 minutes and use this time to stretch, dance or take a walk around the classroom.
Not far from the hourglass, you’ll find the dice tool. We recommend setting the amount of dice to one and writing a brief list of dance or movement commands for the class to follow – for example:
1 – High-five another student.
2 – Cheer like winners!
3 – Clap three times.
4 – Jump on the spot four times.
5 – Walk to the other side of the room.
6 – Touch your toes.
Use the table tools available on Presenter 9 to host a quick, fun game as a mid-lesson break. We recommend the Art Game (spot-the-difference) and the Sequence Train.
Brain breaks are an excellent way to refocus and re-energise. Enjoy getting the most out of the wide variety of classroom tools available in Prowise Presenter!
To get started using Presenter’s touch table tools, first download the updated app for Presenter 9. The table tools will work for those with a Pro Account – contact ELB Australia if you’d like to purchase a Pro Account licence.
When Prowise Presenter’s touch table tools were released in February 2017, I spent an afternoon playing with, learning and enjoying the variety of new and exciting games available to use. While the table tools are all ready to go – and they look stunning, with especially crisp colours and graphics – a new classroom tool inevitably requires new boundaries for teachers to set and for students to learn. Below I’ve shared my top six tips for getting the most out of the touch table tools.
Thanks to Harper Collins Publishers Preservice teachers from Macquarie University were able to create digital lessons in Prowise Presenter based on the many beautiful texts that Harper Collins provided for the ELB Content Creation Workshop.
ELB Education organised the Content Creation Workshop for the Preservice teachers who had already participated in the Prowise Presenter 101 course. The participants are the first University students in Australia to be provided with free Prowise Presenter Accounts for the duration of their degree courses. They will be able to create digital lessons in Prowise Presenter which they can save to their accounts and use during their practicums.
This is an opportunity that Prowise Netherlands has made available for any Preservice teacher in Australia. Macquarie University’s Department of Education Studies saw the benefit of this offer and set up accounts for their Preservice teachers. They saw the advantage of Prowise Presenter being cloud- based and deployable on any device, interactive white board or interactive flat panel that the students might encounter on their practicums.
Like all educational technologies it is important to learn how it can be successfully used in the classroom and so the Preservice teachers have been participating in Professional Learning with the ELB Team. The ELB Training Manager, an experienced classroom teacher herself demonstrated all the features of the software and acted as a coach to the new teachers in designing highly engaging lessons.
When the Education Manager at Harper Collins heard that they would be creating content to share with other Australian teachers she was keen for them to use Australian literature texts. The students therefore had access to some of the best Australian authors and illustrators including Jackie French, Libby Hathorn and Bruce Watterly
From their syllabuses the Preservice teachers identified the outcomes they wanted to address and the appropriate approach to the text. Using the Prowise Presenter software they were able to craft lesson sequences, aligning them to the syllabus and developing a range of activities for their students. They could also access the Harper Collins’ and authors’ websites and link these to the lessons.
They were able to design the learning for their students creating collaborative activities and modelling specific text features. The Preservice teachers were asked to share their content with the ever increasing community of Australian teachers creating Prowise lessons.
The Global Community of Prowise teachers has now uploaded more than 1,000, 000 teaching resources as well for teachers to access. Teachers can also use the galleries that are part of Prowise Presenter, their own files and photos or simply search and bring videos and images from YouTube.
The quality of the learning that these teachers will be able to bring to the classroom has been enhanced through the Content Creation workshop and having access to outstanding literature texts. To learn more about free Prowise Presenter accounts or participating in a Content Creation Workshops contact as at email@example.com
Teachers from Blacktown South participated in a STEMWise PDMeet delivered by the ELB Education team. Blacktown South Public School has already embraced Prowise interactive flat panels with leading staff demonstrating the effective use of the Prowise Presenter cloud-based lesson creation software in the classroom.
The ELB team worked with the Principal, Andrew Bowmer and Lead Teacher IT Coordinator Michelle Cremona to design the STEMWise PDMeet which provided a range of break-out workshops to support teachers in their use of the Prowise interactive flat-panels and associated Prowise Presenter software across a range of devices in the classroom. Teachers familiar with interactive teaching software and the use of Presenter had the opportunity to develop their skills in teaching coding and robotics at age-appropriate levels for their students.
For instance teachers also learned how the SPRK+ Sphero robot can be the next step from using CodeWise in the Presenter software to programming a robot. Teachers loved the hands on component of the PDMeet learning to code and learning how to introduce robots into the curriculum
Teachers joined workshops of their choice including:
The STEMWise PDmeet saw all participants receive BOSTES accreditation at Proficient Teacher status and a certificate for their portfolio as the ELB Academy is a BOSTES endorsed provider of accredited teacher professional development, with all courses recognised for their high standard and high value to teachers, schools and ultimately the students.
The activity-based nature of the workshops and the immediate links to the teachers’ curriculum ensured that teachers were engaged. One teacher’s feedback indicating that it was one of the best PD events she had experienced. If you would like to host a STEMWise PDMeet at you school please contact our ELB Academy Team at firstname.lastname@example.org