Creating A Smart Classroom For Your Students
Taking your teaching to the next level means being smart. And in this case, it means adding “smart elements” to your classroom. And that’s exactly what we’re going to be talking about in this blog post - the smart classroom.
What Exactly Is A Smart Classroom?
In short, a smart classroom is a “tech-enhanced” class, specifically focused on technology that makes teaching (and the student learning experience) much better.
Generally speaking, smart classes have increased interactivity, which helps engage students problem-solving and interest. They also save time on tedious tasks, so you can focus on deeper learning. And overall, smart classes make the education experience more fun for everyone involved.
So what we’re going to do is go over some crucial “Smart Classroom” tools you can use to transform your regular class... into a smarter one.
7 Most Important Smart Classroom Tools To Use
#1 The Projector
Nowadays, this is basically an essential tool for one reason - integration! You can easily display lessons from your portable laptop for easy teaching. Or you can share something you caught on your digital camera for an impromptu teaching lesson, adding an element of surprise to what’s normally a regimented learning experience.
You can even go a step further with an “interactive” projector as well, so you can directly manipulate what’s being displayed. This is an easy way to "up" the engagement factor, which will keep students more interested in the lesson itself.
#2 The Laptop
This is a staple tool for students and teachers alike. It’s easy to share info this way and is comfortable for 99% of students to use. And for you as the teacher, you can easily have your lessons loaded up on your laptop and with the help of a projector, teach it to a large group of students with no problems at all.
#3 The Interactive Flat Panel (IFP)
Think of this as the whiteboard of the future. In a nutshell, it’s basically a huge tablet you can interact with using a stylus pen. So you can write on it, draw on it, project info on it, or even watch videos on it. This makes teaching easy with the benefit of allowing students to use it as well.
#4 Tablet Devices
Tablets are great because they’re easy to pass around and share. This means you can limit the amount of technology needed to teach everyone, which lowers the number of tech problems you’ll experience as well. Plus, most students know how to use one, so you’ll have one less thing to worry about in your smart classroom.
#5 Wireless Microphones
For bigger classes, it may be helpful to add in wireless microphones so people don’t strain themselves to be heard.
Or if it’s primarily for you to use as a teacher, a hands-free option is a smart way to go. While using it, you can pretty much teach the same as always, but now you know for sure every student can hear you. And this is perfect because it’s all too easy to tune out of a lesson if you can’t hear the teacher well.
#6 Speaker System
Naturally, if you’re going to be using a microphone, you’ll need a good set of speakers so that your lessons are always loud and clear. You may need to experiment with the placement of your speakers for optimal sound quality. But even a bad arrangement is miles better than your students in the back corner daydreaming, all because they can’t hear you clearly.
#7 Feedback Software
These are actually tools used to increase engagement during business meetings. But they’re perfect for student interaction as well. Essentially, you can use software like AnswerGarden to let students submit ideas or feedback, and you’ll get a visual that has everybody’s input added to it.
This is great for brainstorming and getting everybody involved, even the quieter students as well. It’s also an easy way to add a “fun” element to the class since you don’t need to use it strictly for learning purposes every time.
Smart Students For A Smart Classroom
Even with all these additional tech options, the most important thing is your students have an easy time using them. And beyond the basics of how to interact with these smart tools, you’ll also want to make sure it’s easy for students to communicate not just with you, but with each other as well.
And how can you do that? By growing their typing skills with simple online tools like those found at KeyboardingOnline. This will help give them the confidence to keep up with your class and their fellow classmates, which will lead to a better learning experience for all.