Technology in the classroom should make every teacher’s job easier, no matter what type of technology it is. So keep using the tools you already love. But also consider a few ways that school teachers can take advantage of a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), also called a Learning Management System or LMS, to facilitate in-class education and engage with students.
It goes without saying that technology is a key resource employed by teachers looking to enhance their in-class work to support stronger connections with their diverse students both inside and outside of the classroom. Sharing content online, electronic communication, and interactive multi-media tools allow teachers to bridge the gap between school and home.
Did You Know?
- 363% growth in Internet devices in K-12 schools in last decade
- ~200% growth in past decade of students using a computer in math class
- 64% of teachers say they’ve received training in technology in 2009; Only 61% in 2015
Not all technology is created equal. A next generation Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) can assist in much of the administrative day-to-day work that teachers face, allowing them to make better use of their time and skills while using the tools they love. Free online tools offer some amazing ways to engage students and aid teachers – but they tend to have a limited amount of functionality when to comes to automating the process that students and teachers need. This is particularly true when it comes to offering critical data on student performance.
Stats from the class
- 74% of teachers say that technology motivates students
- 20% growth in tablet usage in one year
- 66% of teachers want more tech in the classroom
- 9/10 students say technology in classroom will help them get jobs in future
Here are a few ways that a VLE can address the needs of teachers, parents, and students alike.
- Integration with free tools. You can still use the free stuff you love! A VLE connects assessments and content tools that teachers are using each day – but using a single login.
- An interface students love. Visual look and feel can be changed and augmented to appear mature or elementary to align with needs of early readers up to high school students. Works on every device, even the old hand-me-downs!
- Communicate with students. Interact with and provide feedback to students who might be quiet in class. The automation and intelligence built into a modern VLE helps to foster the 1:1 ratio between teacher and student.
- Add grades quickly. Rather than waiting until the end of the class or day, immediately record moments of learning.
- Students develop independence. Students can make reflections in an ePortfolio, upload their own content, and provide feedback to teachers.
- Video feedback and assignments. Students love creating and engaging with video. Easily upload video content that students can access from anywhere. Provide engaging personal responses to student work using video tools.
- Flexible delivery modalities. If you’re doing a CBE/project-based initiative, these can be created and maintained using a VLE in a scalable manner to minimise administrative overhead.
- Efficient Grading Tool. Integration with grade book is done automatically and immediately accessible to students and parents for review.
- Parent engagement. Give parents a ‘fly on the wall’ view of upcoming due dates, schedules, grades and in-class information without burdening the teacher.
- Create unique content. Using HTML and interactive tools, teachers can create modern and compelling online content – students will have fun doing assignments, quizzes, surveys – and even games!
- Built-in intelligence. A rules-based engine can identify certain student behaviours automatically and send out communications or create and assign a new learning path or differentiate an assignment.
- Professional Learning. Communities of teachers can connect and learn together online using the same platform their students will use – creating empathy and deeper understanding of how to teach effectively online.
- Easily re-use content. Teachers can quickly access a repository of frequently needed content to insert into a course, saving them a great deal of administrative time.
- Monitor student progress. Teachers can get quick assessments of students and examine data daily to spot at-risk behaviour, catching learning issues as early as possible.