How Do We Know When Technology Helps—or Hurts—the Classroom?

July 5, 2016

How Do We Know When Technology Helps—or Hurts—the Classroom? Educators at ISTE Weigh In


  • “We dropped over $10,000 last year on a math product, but I’m not sure if it’s really helped our students learn.” Sound familiar? Educators frequently agree that it’s challenging to draw a direct correlation between technology and student success but, How do we measure technology’s effectiveness? To answer that question is helpful to keep in mind that “It’s not about the new toys. It’s about teaching kids to think.”
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Keywords: education, technology, educational technology, edtech, educators, ISTE 2016

No Grades, No Timetable: Berlin School Turns Teaching Upside Down

The Guardian

  • A unique school has turned the conventions of traditional teaching radically upside down. There are no grades, no timetables and no lecture-style instructions. Pupils choose their own subjects and when they want to take an exam. For a course called "challenge", students are given €150 and sent on an adventure that they have to plan entirely by themselves. The philosophy behind these innovations is simple: as the labour market is changing, the most important skill a school can pass down to its students is the ability to motivate themselves.
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Keywords: innovation in education, innovative schools, innovators

How Khan Academy’s Founder Designs a Brick and Mortar School for Kids


  • Sal Khan, a pioneer of online tutorials with his successful Khan Academy, has established a private brick-and-mortar laboratory school in Silicon Valley. The kindergarten through eighth-grade school currently serves some 65 students. There are no grades or grade levels; there's no traditional homework. Students shape their own schedules, craft attainable daily and term goals. This is how a day at the Khan Lab School looks like.
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Keywords: innovation in education, pioneers, entrepreneurs, leaders

Amazon Unveils Online Education Service for Teachers

The New York Times

  • Amazon announced it would introduce an online marketplace with tens of thousands of free lesson plans, worksheets and other instructional materials for teachers, called Amazon Inspire. By starting out with a free resources service for teachers, Amazon is establishing a foothold that could expand into a one-stop shopping marketplace. The service will be available in late August or early September.
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Keywords: education, technology, platforms, materials for teachers

Blockchain Could Reconfigure Education


  • What if, rather than solving a problem, technology could open doors for learning? Blockchain, a distributed, encrypted technology that tracks and verifies transactions, could have such impacts on learning in the next 10 years, according to the paper “Learning on the Block: Could Smart Transactional Models Help Power Personalized Learning?” that considers possible impacts blockchain and smart contracts could have on the future of learning.
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Keywords: blockchain technology, higher education, innovation in education

Report: Broad Transformations Affecting Higher Education

Education News

  • The traditional credit hour may be on the way out as competency-based learning and more flexible options come into demand. This according to the report, “Transformations Affecting Postsecondary Education” that says that in order to change higher education, students need to follow personalized pathways to a credential, guided through a combination of coaching and electronic advising. While badges and microcredentials would be placed in e-portfolios that can be taken with them throughout their life.
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Keywords: higher education, report, competency-based education, flexible pathways, badges, microcredentials, e-portfolios

What a Flat Classroom Really Looks Like


  • The traditional model of education is hierarchical, with administrators of learning on top and students receiving the learning somewhere below. While this made sense in the past, it does not work in a modern classroom. Visualizing learners as collaborators is the first step in changing the tone of your classroom. As critical decisions are identified, analyzed, modeled, and revisited, capacity in students will begin to grow. This honors students more than any granular notion of content might, and begins to build learners rather than learning.
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Keywords: teaching, classroom, educators, teaching strategies, students

Higher Education Academy Research: Learning Excellence (July 6)
NMC Beyond the Horizon > Learning Spaces (July 13)
Research and Approaches to Expand the Definition of Student Success (July 13)

Edulearn 2016 (Jul 4-6)
Learning Innovation Lab (Jul 12-14)
FlipCon 2016 (Jul 19-21)
Serious Games (Jul 26-28)
MasteryCon 2016 (Jul 27-29)
All upcoming conferences and events...

Educational Innovation Weekly Review is curated by Tecnológico de Monterrey's Observatory of Educational Innovation. With the highlights of the week on innovation, technology and education. If you require more information about a specific note, please email us: TECNOLÓGICO DE MONTERREY, 2016.

Observatory of Educational Innovation

Tecnológico de Monterrey's Observatory of Educational Innovation: We identify and analyze the educational innovation trends that are shaping the future of learning and education. 

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