Saturday, 30 Sep 2023

4 Ways Classrooms Are Changing

How will the classroom of the future look? To try and predict this, the changes that have already been made need to be considered. Online submission of assignments are already commonplace in universities and colleges as is posting grades online and group projects being contributed to and finished via collaborative software. Cloud storage is also making strides, a place where teachers and students can contribute resources that can be accessed by the whole class. Teachers, students, parents and administrators can communicate via social media platforms specifically designed for educational information. They can even fill in a school self-evaluation form to provide feedback to the school to help better itself as an institution.

Classroom layouts are changing. Forget the rows of chairs and desks focused on the teacher and using a whiteboard to explain concepts. Seating arrangements should be flexible, appropriate for the current task, and focus on the comfort of students. Private workspaces should be available when necessary, but also areas ideal for workshops and collaborative projects. Standing desks could become commonplace for students who have trouble maintaining focus when sitting. Interactive whiteboards have become more common, especially in primary schools all over the country but, interactive projectors could take their place. There will be an emphasis on the autonomy of students to sit how and where they want.

Augmented reality and virtual learning will change the landscape of education. It opens many realms of possibility, all designed to encourage students to engage with the material. For example, a three-dimensional interactive model of the earth, various landforms, cross-sections versus a map, it would change the way geography is taught. Apps and other educational devices act upon a trigger to create a learning experience. This would be especially revolutionary for rural students that find it difficult to reach places for school trips or resources, they could do it all via augmented reality. The virtual reality headsets can be made somewhat inexpensively and therefore finance and location will no longer be a barrier for teachers and students.

Flexible assignments are becoming more common to accommodate multiple learning styles. Students completing the same assignments in the same way are ineffective; the one size fits all approach to learning and teaching don’t take into account the specific needs of the student. With flexible assignments it will focus more on the competency of the student rather than the method of delivery. Teachers will outline the skills they want demonstrated rather than how they should demonstrate them.

Online learning options will impact secondary education. The usual progression through school to college to career isn’t necessarily important or accurate anymore. Today anyone with an email address and a computer can sign up to courses and study remotely when they have the time, just look at the success of the Open University. A particularly motivated student could achieve so much more in a shorter space of time thanks to technology.

There is no escaping technology and the effect it will have in our schools, so we may as well embrace it.