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3 Technology Tools for Daily Learning

20 Jan 2015 by Samantha Cleaver

Educators are on board with technology in schools. There is no denying technology tools are essential for projects, research, and skill-building. However many classrooms still struggle to integrate technology tools into daily learning.

Does your classroom have access to 1:1 technology? Jump in head first with these three tools that will seamlessly support learning in your classroom.

Socrative

Every day, teachers want to integrate formative assessment, both for content and language learning in lessons. Socrative organizes questions, games, quizzes, or even tests, so educators can gather data on student learning. The teacher first sets up a Socrative room number with the number of students. A url is given to students for access to the questions. Then the teacher decides on the type of questions, and enters the questions and answer choices. If the teacher does not want to enter questions in advance, an oral quiz can be given and students can type in their answers.

Real time

Class discussions are used to debrief content daily. However students can get distracted, off topic, or just plain loud. How about virtual discussions? Google Chrome, iChat, or Twitter (with a class or topic hashtag) can be used to facilitate discussions in which students read what others contribute and respond back in writing. If students are not permitted, or do not have accounts on these features, another option for virtual discussions is TodaysMeet. This is a private chat room enabled by the teacher that is accessed with a url. The teacher simply names the room and decides how long the url room will stay open. Students type in their names when accessing the room, so teachers can informally assess learning as they would in a typical oral discussion.

Google Drive

Collaboration, forms, surveys, journals, and document storage for daily use can be supported in Google Drive. Documents saved in Google Drive are stored on the cloud. This means the classroom does not have to be concerned with storage space on computers or devices. It also means the documents can be easily shared with other classmates and the teacher. The teacher or the students can create forms, surveys, or journals for formative assessment.

Still nervous about daily technology use?

Most problems can be addressed in one of four ways:

  1. Make sure your device is charged, and power is on.
  2. Make sure Wi-Fi is on by checking for the signal. If no Wi-Fi signal shows, check your cable for Internet connection. You can reset your connection on mobile devices by turning airplane mode off and on.
  3. Restart the device. This is a general tip that works on many different issues from devices freezing to applications that just don’t seem to function as anticipated.
  4. Suspect user error? If it’s your skills that may be lacking, always ask the digital consultant–Google. Most challenges can be overcome by typing them into a Google search. Solutions often pop up with simple step-by -step procedures, and sometimes video, too.

As with any good classroom instruction, technology works best when supported with strong classroom management skills, and behaviors built on trust and respect. Teachers who communicate clear expectations and model basic steps will reap the benefits of daily technology integration.

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