Smart Classrooms: Helping Students and Teachers Thrive

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Only a few years ago, classrooms were bursting with blackboards, pencils, and notebooks. Today, you don’t have to look far to find a plethora of monitors, computers, tablets, and smartphones. Recent advances in technology have found their way into schools because of the numerous benefits to both students and teachers. Increased school performance, healthier lifestyles and added convenience can all be achieved by integrating technology with traditional classroom learning for a truly smart classroom.

Learn four ways smart classrooms are helping students and teachers find success.

Blending the Best of Both Worlds

Traditional learning and cutting-edge technology both have a place in schools. Get the best of both worlds by investing in blended learning. Blended learning combines online learning with in-person communication to create a smart classroom. Digital curriculum is blended with in-class topics to promote powerful learning. Adopting blended learning took one school from a low-performing status to eventually winning a national award for performance.

Technology also streamlines administrative tasks and makes learning more convenient. Teachers can upload lectures, videos and assignments to mobile applications. Students can then access these apps anywhere, at any time. Online platforms also store grades and attendance records, making it easier for students and parents to check them.

Wearables Provide Ease of Mind

Technology in the classroom goes beyond computers and tablets. Wearable technology is finding a place in schools, with trends showing an increase in the U.S. by 45 percent. Using smart wristwatches and wristbands, teachers can take attendance almost instantly. (Gone are the days when every student had to raise their hand and announce that they were present.) For younger students on field trips, wearable technology helps teachers and chaperones make sure that the class stays together. Monitoring health and encouraging daily activity are also possible with smartwatches. Track heart rates during recess, physical education classes, and throughout the day. Parents and teachers can also use wearable technology to ensure that children get enough sleep.

In addition to wrist wearables, virtual reality (VR) sets create an immersive, 3D learning environment for students. Using VR technology has proven to facilitate faster learning with greater retention when used in classrooms.

School-Wide Communication

Keeping people connected across campus is more manageable with smart classrooms. Install monitors in individual classrooms to provide a direct connection to the central office. These monitors can stream school messages that provide daily announcements, weather updates and emergency notifications. Both students and teachers will stay safe with timely notifications about severe weather or lockdown situations. Integrating emerging technology into your school infrastructure also makes communication more reliable.

Personalize Learning With Data

One of the biggest advantages to a smart classroom is access to analytics. Information gathered in schools can be used to personalize learning and cater to an individual student’s needs and abilities. School districts, principals, teachers and parents can all use student analytics to create a better learning environment. During class, teachers use live analytics to track student progress. Students receive timely feedback from online tests that offer an immediate score. Gathering answers to questions during discussions and lectures helps teachers tailor material to their pupils. Teachers can also pass on important data to parents. One study suggests that data analytics can predict future at-risk students who are likely to drop out of school.

While using analytics is helpful, maintaining student privacy must continue to be a priority. Only so much can be tracked. At the end of the day, students need to feel connected with their classmates and teachers to facilitate higher-order thinking.

A Better Learning Environment

In-classroom learning will always play a role in education, but emerging technologies can facilitate superior learning with better retention. Bringing monitors and wearables into schools provides teachers and administrators with the data they need to personalize learning. While smart classrooms don’t guarantee success in school, they can definitely put students on the right track.

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