Welcome to the world of classrooms without walls!
What is your earliest memory of a classroom? We bet that it is of a stuffy, noisy place, and a teacher who looked mildly intimidating. Gen next kids have a better option. Teachers across the globe and classrooms are trying to introduce kids a better and whole new world of learning. Video conferences that were once synonymous with boardrooms, has made its way into classrooms.
Skype in the classroom, Google Hangouts and Facetime are as much as a part of schools as gym lockers.
Want a quieter classroom?
How do you silence a class of squealing kindergartners? Put them to sleep or make them talk to a guest speaker! Inviting historical societies, experts and celebrities to video conference with school kids, can make learning a more beautiful experience. And yes make those little pigtailed heads, to all of a sudden, nod their heads in unison.
More communicative kids…
The best way to bring painfully shy kids, out of their shell is to say ‘hi’ to a person on a video. Video and web conferences help students to become more outgoing and break down language barriers. The very innovative Verbalizeit can facilitate cross language learning through providing direct access to translators, to help kids learn a new language.
Elluminate your classes!
An elementary school in North Carolina communicates with its sister school in Mexico through Elluminate a simple web conferencing program. The interactive whiteboard it offers helps teachers to connect with other schools. The two schools collaborated and published a book recently.
“This will open up new avenues in the education system and help transform boring Wednesdays” smiles Tricia a high school teacher based in Florida.
Making education a more personal experience!
It is stunning how many of us view education as something that has to be endured. How, ho-hum school was. Platforms like Google Hangouts help students to have a more personalized education experience. Students can maintain an online portfolio and have their own channel. Right from that anxious poem recital in second grade to the funky college haircut, everything can be documented.
But why are so few schools using them?
There are still several schools that are apprehensive about using technology in classrooms. It can prove to be costly, counter-productive and distracting is their war cry. But, if the number of schools, joining the video conferencing bandwagon, is anything to go by, video conferences are here to stay!