One of the main ways Education Technology impacts on the learning experience of 21st Century students is by offering them the chance to learn by using devices, tools and apps that are really intuitive, easy and somehow fun to use. This generate a positive reaction in the students, who feel more engaged with their classmates, with teachers and the subjects taught by them, and in the long term this increasing engagement reflects on a higher effectiveness of the classroom experience.
Game-based learning (GBL) is a learning method that leverages on the use of games as a part of the learning process, in order to enhance the classroom experience of the students. Using competitive exercises characterized by fantasy elements, Game-based learning carries pupils into virtual environments with clear characteristics: they are safe to make students feel comfortable, and inside them, students have to teach established goals by taking actions, making mistakes and experience the consequences (in a risk-free situation).
Game-based learning is quite different from gamification, which consists in applying some game elements to a non-game situation: for example, implementing a scoring game mechanic to reward users for certain behaviors, so to have an alternative to the traditional grading system.
However, both these new teaching approaches are more and more effective in making young students more engaged during their classroom lessons, contributing to develop fundamental soft skills such as critical thinking and problem solving.
Mixed Reality merges real elements with virtual worlds creating the so-called phygital environments, where the boundaries among physical and digital objects are very fleeting. An HMD (head mounted display) and a motion controller are enough to access to a mix of real and virtual worlds and to allow students to interact with this Mixed Reality environment.
This innovative technology is gaining a growing space in education process, as we have seen with two important success stories that have Acer Windows Mixed Reality Headset as protagonist, coming from United Kingdom and Czech Republic schools. And it’s not difficult to guess why Mixed Reality is so appreciated, especially by students: it offers a whole immersive learning experience, with pupils able to explore foreign countries or to go through the solar system…without leaving the classroom!
“One size fits all” is an outdated teaching method, educators can no longer apply it in classroom filled with students with different learning and knowledge background. Nowadays Education Technology offers many solutions in terms of devices and especially approaches that allows teachers to overtake conventional education methods and to cater to each student’s specific need.
Devices like Acer Chromebooks or Acer Chromebook Tab10, along with specific tools as Google Suite for Education and Office365 Suite and along with cloud technology, enable teachers to promote interactive learning methods with a high personalization rate. A personalized learning approach helps students to identify their weaknesses as well as their passions and talents, and so it supports teachers in building a personalized learning path that children will follow throughout their lives. In this way, any student can eventually reach the same level of knowledge of his classmates.
This approach is very similar to adaptive learning, which is an educational system based on technology and data analysis, which allows teachers to track students’ performance and adjust methods and programs to each learner’s needs.
These are both learner-centric approaches, where student plays an active role in the learning process, feeling more considered by his educators and more engaged in the definition of his study path and, in the long term, in the definition of his future.
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