ISTELive 23: How to engage students with the power of technology
Digital tools to elevate your classroom
Picture this: you’re back in high school. Tick, tick, tick. Time drags in your hour-long world history class, but each minute brings you closer to the bell and three sweet minutes of freedom between periods. Your teacher is talking about the Great Pyramids of Giza, again. You’ve read the books; you’ve seen the pictures – you get it. But wait, this is different. Your attention snaps away from the clock for the first time since roll call when your teacher pulls out a virtual reality (VR) headset and asks you to put it on. In an instant, you’re (virtually) transported to the sole survivor of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. You can almost feel the sand shift beneath your feet, and for the first time you understand the vastness of this enigmatic marvel. You’re fully engaged.
According to the 2023 Gradient Learning Poll, 50% of students say they are not engaged with what they are learning in school. And with a direct correlation between engagement and academic success, many teachers are turning to technology to bring hands-on learning experiences into the classroom. So, what tools do educators need to provoke student curiosity and participation?
ISTELive 23 – empowering teachers to think outside the box
On a hot and muggy June day in Philadelphia, ISTELive 23 commenced, bringing together thousands of educators, K-12 administrators, and IT professionals, with one common goal in mind – to reimagine student engagement through technology. We sent in our own all-star education team and built a virtual reality lounge to showcase our stimulating new classroom VR capabilities. We’re here to share our insights from ISTE that are bound to enhance your students’ learning environments for 2023 and beyond.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is the next big thing in education
Everyone is talking about it, and for good reason. AI is becoming a critical part of district STEM curriculums. Educators are learning the advanced capabilities of adaptive technology so that they can implement it in a classroom environment. Now more than ever, teachers can personalize instruction for students based on their individual needs, creating an interactive learning environment for everyone to take part in. AI can be used in a variety of ways, including:
- Tutoring students in areas where they need one-on-one support.
- Automating repetitive tasks such as grading assignments.
- Creating adaptive assessments for students with varying learning abilities.
- Analyzing student performance data to deliver feedback to teachers and parents.
With AI, learning gaps can easily be identified, improving student-teacher communication and enhancing classroom engagement.
Inclusion should be easier than ever to implement
At ISTELive 2023, there was a major focus on how to incorporate inclusive technology into our schools. Tailoring technology to the needs of individual students can be difficult for teachers who are already juggling student behavior, classroom management, and (of course) teaching.
As schools continue to explore ways to create a more equitable learning environment, Microsoft announced enhancements to their inclusivity features through Microsoft 365. These include Immersive Reader, a tool that helps improve fluency and comprehension; Translator, which uses live captioning for cross-language understanding; and Read Aloud, a text-to-speech app that is especially helpful for those who are visually impaired. And these are just a few of the inclusion and accessibility tools available on the market. Every student should feel like they belong in their classroom, and technology can play a big role in making that happen.
Collaboration (tools) just got easier
From video conferencing to project management applications, collaboration tools play a major part in our daily lives. Communication in a classroom is key to fostering a successful learning environment, which is why technology and teamwork go hand in hand. Some of the digital learning options on the market right now include:
- Cross-platform email, video conferencing, and calendar management
- Fluency and comprehension checkers to analyze student progress
- Interactive presentation tools to deliver engaging content
- Virtual notebooks with commenting and co-editing abilities
- Game- and trivia-based learning to enhance student participation
- Online whiteboards to share ideas
- Online tutoring services with one-on-one lessons
- Workflow management to organize your work
The traditional brick and mortar classroom has evolved, and educators can now bring their classrooms to life. Students can access content anywhere, at any time, giving them more independence and flexibility than ever before.
Are you ready to inspire new ways of learning?
“By infusing technology into the curriculum, students become better prepared to embrace the rapid changes and challenges they will experience as they navigate their futures.” –Lori Whitt
After attending ISTELive 23, there’s no doubt that for education, this year will be a transformative one. Between immersive technologies, AI, collaboration application upgrades, and more, our team can show you the new and exciting tools being used to enhance student engagement in schools around the world.
Ready to learn more? SHI Education is here to advance your learning environment and integrate new technology for enhanced, personalized student experiences. We have access to cutting-edge technologies that can redefine the ways students learn, allowing further engagement and collaboration through innovative learning experiences.