Since the advent of smartphones, social media and instantly accessible information, it can be hard to keep lessons engaging. Research on attention spans shows that children struggle to stay focused on one activity for more than 10 to 12 minutes. Low engagement in schoolchildren can lead to poor exam results, higher dropout rates and lower levels of well-being in students.
One way of engaging students in class is through collaborative activities. Collaboration can improve social skills as well as cultivate a sense of leadership and teamwork. Sharing the work produced by groups of pupils with the rest of the class can also encourage innovation and original ideas.
Using technology in lessons is not just a way of acclimatising children to the digital economy, but an effective way of enabling collaboration in class. For example, when pupils are presented with a research presentation task, they need to distribute roles among themselves. With web access, the near limitless information available means students have to come up with their own sense of direction for the project - a skill as important as the research itself and a technique which encourages active learning.
Giving students the autonomy to put together a presentation themselves empowers and allows students to get creative - even if that means spending five minutes carefully considering which animated slide transition to choose!
All too often in group presentation tasks, allowing enough time at the end for all the groups to present their work is a challenge. The hassle of plugging in and unplugging laptops from the projector can seriously cut into presentation time and can give time for pupils to lose interest. With the 1-Click Connect feature from the Superior Series, students can connect to the projector wirelessly and instantly. The moderator app enables the teacher to instantly select and project one, two or four devices, keeping disruption to a series of presentations to an absolute minimum.
The split screen function lets teachers compare work across groups or individuals easily. Sharing the findings with the rest of the class allows students to help each other, filling the knowledge gaps in their work.