Educational Technology (EdTech) makes big promises. From rapidly reducing workload, to preparing students as “digital citizens”, Airsupply explores 3 big changes, asking what they mean for your classroom, teachers and school leadership.
A) Changes in the classroom
EdTech is transforming the classroom in two big ways. First, it’s revolutionising lesson content and activities. IT and computing are increasingly taught alongside and within other lessons. Schools across the country are trialing coding, while some have gone as far as fixing it in their curriculum. Where funding allows, schools are also investing in cutting edge hardware. Infact, the upcoming T-Levels set aside funding specifically for this. Activities and lesson structure are also being shaped by technology. “Gamification” of tasks, whether you love or loathe it, is increasingly present. Technology is creating activities designed to be engaging, compulsive and fun. Today a Primary classroom without DoJo, or a secondary one without a visualizer, are hard to fathom.
Second, is the ability technology has to bring the classroom in to the home. Technology which enables schools to monitor homework and set optional extensions is increasingly common. Many of the programmes that encourage work outside of the classroom also involve parents, strengthening the school/ home relationship. It is now easier than ever for students to access information needed to learn at home. Additional study material, either hosted by a school or external platform, has transformed how students access information while outside the classroom. Learning can happen on the bus, at home and in school.
Top Airsupply recommendation for the classrom: https://www.studytracks.education/
B) Changes for teachers
Teaching is viewed as a profession safe from automation. This isn’t stopping technology changing the way teachers work. Programmes have been designed to assist planning and activity sequence, while apps are now available to help share this information between members of staff. There is also the promise of new flexibility for teachers, with some schools experimenting with distance learning and “virtual” lessons. CPD has also evolved with technology. Not only is there much greater access to CPD online, but the use of forums has changed the way teachers discuss and communicate teaching and learning.
Technology has already changed the way that certain subjects, such as maths, assess. Developments in comparative judgement could transform how teachers mark work in the humanities and arts. The change in how homework is monitored is proven reduce workload. Assessment for Learning, through apps and hardware in the classroom, is accelerating feedback response time. New ways of collecting and analysing data are helping teachers respond to the ever mounting pressure of “data analysis”.
Top Airsupply recommendation for teachers: https://www.nomoremarking.com/
C) Changes for leaders
Technology can bring efficiency. New tools designed to collect and process data, on everything from staff absence to homework completion rate, promise to change the way in which schools manage their resources. Technology is developing procurement practices, allowing more accurate and easier ordering of equipment. Recruitment is also being transformed, with a host of organisations trying to reduce the cost of bringing teachers into the classroom. Staff communication and cohesion can also change with technology - messaging services, forums and shared resources are transforming the way that school leaders interact and team-up.
In a period where school budgets are tight, the promise of efficiency and cost reductions through technology are being realised by school leaders. Perhaps not a panacea, technology does have scope to make some school process more efficient.
Top Airsupply recommendation for school leaders: https://assembly.education/
As a technology company, Airsupply are interested in your feedback on EdTech's increased presence in schools. We’d value your input in this discussion. Or, if you’d like to hear about some of the start-ups in EdTech we’re working closely with, Do get in touch.