Virtual Learning Will Mesh Home and Public Education
Virtual learning has been part of the curriculum for homeschool students for several years. Increasingly, public schools are also incorporating a variety of online technology. Virtual learning can include everything from video instruction to educational chat rooms.
Several prominent companies are making incredible advances in the field of virtual learning, including Immerse Education and zSpace. The line between home learning and public education will continue to blur as both continue to use virtual learning in various ways.
Gamification Will Increase
Elaborate games and fun online competitions will enable students to learn new material and reinforce old skills. According to International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), gamification provides several excellent tools. For example, failure can be used as an instant source of feedback, and collaboration is often a necessary component. Earning badges or prizes when specific goals are met can also be part of the gamification process.
EdTech Review provides several examples of great learning games in the classroom. A few include DuoLingo for learning new languages and PlayBrighter, which enables assignments to be turned into missions. Deloitte Leadership Academy is an example of a cutting-edge company producing gamification products. Gamification is a process that transforms classroom activities into fun games that ultimately increase learning.
Cloud Computing & the Digital Library
Cloud computing can save schools money while enabling them to still access a wide variety of software and educational resources. Accessing software online saves on installation and maintenance costs associated with upgrading dozens of laptop and desktop computers throughout the school.
Digital libraries are a necessary resource for every classroom. E-books are cost-effective, often have multimedia tie-ins and are environmentally friendly. Having easy access to a digital library makes it easier for instructors to assign the same book to the entire class. It can also assist special needs students by providing increased text size or read-aloud selections.
LCD Touch Boards
A variety of companies are producing touch boards including Hitachi, Panasonic and Mimio. These incredible new touch boards bring cutting-edge technology to the classic whiteboard. With new software, basically anything that can be done on a computer screen can be done on a touch board. The touch of the hand or a pointer makes it even easier to manage than a traditional computer.
Interactive boards create a multi-sensory learning experience. District Administration states that several users can draw and write on the board simultaneously. This means several students can collaborate on a project together at the same time. Another benefit includes the fact that LCD touch boards don't rely on an overhead projector, which means there won't be any shadows when the instructor touches the screen.
Big Data & Analytics
Educators have always used data but now, with advanced technology, the use of data in the classroom has reached a whole new level. Education Week reports that the type of student information that is gathered and analyzed will go beyond test scores to include monitoring facials expressions and social interactions.
Devices can monitor heart rates while computer software can track and analyze a child's online activity. This type of data can be used to provide detailed insight and specific recommendations to improve each individual child's ability to learn. Companies such as Affectiva are developing facial recognition and expression technology.
These innovative technologies are likely just the beginning of the many new and exciting trends in education. The classroom of the future is already here.
Avi Savar is CEO and Managing Partner of Dreamit, a top venture accelerator and early stage investment fund. He is the author of Content to Commerce and consults globally on trends in digital media, disruptive technologies and corporate innovation. He has been featured on Fox News, Forbes, Mashable, Business Insider, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, the New York Times and is a contributing editor for Inc.
ISTE - https://www.iste.org/explore/articleDetail?articleid=884&category=In-the-classroom&article=
EdTechReview - http://edtechreview.in/news/324-examples-gamification-in-education
eSchool News - https://www.eschoolnews.com/2016/02/17/5-ways-cloud-computing-will-impacts-students-teachers-and-it-in-2016/
District Administration - https://www.districtadministration.com/article/whiteboards-advance-meet-classroom-technology-needs
Education Week - http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2016/01/13/the-future-of-big-data-and-analytics.html