Managing Technology in the Classroom

Technology in the classroom has evolved considerably in the last several decades. Laptops, tablets, and collaborative online platforms have supplanted the simple overhead projector or television on wheels set up, and students are now more digitally connected than ever.

This technological evolution has brought with it the advantage of greater flexibility and classroom engagement, including real-time student polls, online lessons, and cloud-based assistive technologies for students with learning disabilities. However, the pervasiveness of smartphones, laptops, and other devices has its downsides.

According to a report from The Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning at Harvard University, a majority of students admit to using their laptops for activities not related to class. And research has found a negative correlation between student success in class and in-class laptop use.

Blank screens

The tendency to use technology for non-class activities poses many problems for student learning. Simply put, humans simply aren’t wired to multitask well, a scenario researchers call cognitive overload. Essentially, students at any age—but especially younger pupils—cannot simultaneously focus their attention on the lesson, take notes, and retain information while also browsing the web or playing an online game.

While the reflexive response might be to ban technology altogether, researchers suggest taking a more proactive approach.

Incorporate Social Media

If you can’t beat them, join them. Researchers at Harvard University suggest leveraging the highly social tendencies of younger students and incorporating it into the lectures. This can include using social media to crowd source questions or clickers to drive student participation. This kind of classroom management strategy can keep students focused in a way that they find engaging.

Use Humor

Laughter keeps us all engaged, and students are no exception. According to researchers at Harvard, laughter can make students feel more comfortable, decrease anxiety, and establish a positive classroom dynamic.

Add Variety

It should come as no surprise that students tend to pay closer attention when they find lectures engaging and interesting. One way teachers can increase engagement is to design lectures that include student questions in addition to a traditional PowerPoint or presentation. Other collaborative ideas include giving students the opportunity to talk to each other during a lecture instead of only talking to the teacher.

If you want to include technology, consider having students add a written response to an online platform to engage the entire classroom.

Explore Management Options

In today’s technological age, there are now a variety of software options to help you monitor and modify student activity on computers. Classroom management software can be especially useful in the K-12 classroom, with capabilities that let teachers view student activity in real-time and redirect attention when necessary.

Companies like Netop offer software for classroom management that enables teachers and practitioners to view student screens, lock student screens and redirect attention, share teacher and student screens to facilitate learning, and block websites to keep students safe and on task. If a student is on social media instead of paying attention to a lesson, teachers can view student screens in real-time and redirect with the click of a button.

Instead of spending valuable time monitoring computer use during class and refocusing classroom attention, classroom management software can keep students on task and potentially boost student achievement by keeping them engaged.

About Netop

Netop software connects more than 6 million teachers and students and helps educational professionals transform the classroom experience and improve learning. Netop’s Vision classroom management software offers tools to easily monitor and modify student activity and keep students on-task by viewing student activity in real-time and redirecting attention with one click. Vision classroom management software is supported by Windows, Chrome OS, and macOS, and Netop offers the practical and technical support necessary to implement and manage this intuitive software.

Learn more about Netop’s Vision classroom management software at Netop.com

Original Source: https://goo.gl/yW3PWB

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