By Mathew Edwards, product marketing manager at Aerohive
Developments in mobile technology over the past ten years have revolutionised the classroom and education systems. Connected devices such as tablets and smartphones, along with innovative learning platforms, have directly impacted the methods teachers use to educate their students as well as how these institutions remain relevant in a digital society.
Our research found that 75% of schools encourage staff and pupils to use their own devices, which helps provide schools with the technology and tools to establish a better connected learning experience. Many schools today are moving in the right direction in terms of adopting technology, but more could be done to make the most of connected devices and resources.
Underpinning these technologies and ensuring schools have the capabilities to offer a strong connected learning experience is reliable and secure Wi-Fi. It’s a crucial platform that serves to enable students and teachers to access resources, make the most of new devices and assist the better running of schools by maintaining engagement in the classroom.
Reliable connectivity is key
Over half of IT managers in schools believe poor Wi-Fi is holding back children’s digital learning while only 41% believe they have the right wireless solutions in place to offer a strong connected experience for students. This demonstrates the obvious need for schools to ensure they have the right technology in place to provide the best possible teaching experience and help students develop.
Here are just three of the ways Wi-Fi and new technologies can personalise the teaching and learning experience, increasing engagement and collaboration in the classroom:
Technology for all
An age-old problem for teachers has been how to cater to children of varying abilities in the same classroom. It’s a consistent challenge to determine who is falling behind or who is disengaged and how to reach all of these students in the right way at the same time. The use of technology can greatly diminish this problem.
Using various platforms connected by Wi-Fi, teachers can gather insights to better assess student capabilities and create personalised learning plans. Mobile technology allows students of different abilities, to work with content and a curriculum that is exciting to them through devices which provide up to the minute access. It delivers the potential to keep the whole classroom engaged at the same time by reducing the frustration caused when students are not captivated by their work.
Collaborative learning spaces
Some may think increased use of technology and devices in the classroom could deter students from communicating with each other and contribute to lower collaboration levels. Yet, the opposite is in fact true.
By using connected devices, students are able to communicate with one another, work in teams and contribute to a project in groups. There are various applications now on offer to help build students’ communication skills and encourage them to work well as part of a team. Because of developments in devices and applications, the classroom now provides a more collaborative learning experience helping to forge better relationships between students and their teachers.
Access to learning materials
The digital student of today is used to engaging with various types of content outside of school, including videos and applications such as Snap Chat and Facebook Live. With this in mind, schools should cater to this learning style to keep students engaged. However, in order for a roll-out of this kind to be successful, the right underlying bandwidth is key.
The internet powers an abundance of tools, platforms and learning resources for students, and should be used to supplement teaching plans. With only a limited time in the classroom, slow connections causing video buffering or poor access to resources which aren’t compatible for tablet or mobile is hugely detrimental to learning. Simply put, the better the access to these resources, the better the learning experience.
The overall quality of current teaching experiences directly impacts a student’s learning experience, no matter what age. With a good wireless connection and access to the latest technology and solutions, teachers now have the opportunity to personalise their lesson plans, keep disruption to a minimum while positively engaging students and maintain productivity, regardless of their learning speed.
Aerohive delivers an open mobility platform that simplifies and transforms the connected experience, through information, insights, and applications.