A Teacher’s Guide to Innovative Use of ICT in Classroom
Each student is unique and a teacher is successful when she caters to the need of every student in the classroom. The teaching strategies should be appealing to the visual, kinaesthetic and auditory learners. The classroom should be an engaging one for the high achievers as well as the dyslexic ones till the very last minute of the class. How can this be made possible in a class of 35 to 40 students where the potential of each student is different? This is where Information Communication Technology (ICT) can be of great help. It has become inevitable for today’s teacher to be abreast with the usage of various ICT tools to effectively handle the tech-savvy younger generation.
I am glad to share with you a set of tools I have used successfully with my class XI and XII students.
Each topic to be taught in the class is prepared as a presentation. After that, using a screen recording software and microphone a video lesson is made for the same. I upload this vodcast on my Youtube channel. You can use any screen recording software, I use ScreenHunter 7.0. Some of these are free software and others are shareware. Also invest in a good microphone. Vodcast should be prepared for every difficult topic and the link should be shared on the blog. You can find links to excellent vodcasts on my brother Roy Paul’s blog.
This is helpful when the student has missed a lesson or for the slow learners who can learn the topic at their own pace in a convenient place.
When the content is delivered in the class, the teacher can upload the presentation or the Video podcast on the smart board in the classroom. It adds a multimedia element to our lessons, which can effectively resonate with visual and auditory learners. Research has shown that the use of animated videos can positively impact a child’s development in several competence areas including memory, creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving.
It is good to have an introductory video of one minute to effectively introduce the topic. You can extract a movie clip, television show clip, news clip or any other video clip using format factory after downloading it from YouTube/TeacherTube using YouTube downloader. Don’t forget to mention the source when you are using a content which is not yours.
Try to make your vodcast impressive by including Images, Graphs, Pictographs, Podcast clips, Sound effects etc.
YOUTUBE CHANNEL/TEACHERTUBE CHANNEL
We can create our own YouTube channel with our Gmail account. This is highly helpful as we can upload our vodcast/vidcast on the channel and share the link on our Blog. You can visit my YouTube Channel Suma Paul-https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQxBQePS43h40Qc2V19VLow
TeacherTube is an example of an education-only version of YouTube, covering core school subjects. We can create our account in TeacherTube and upload our materials on to it. You will also get access to the materials uploaded by teachers from all across the globe.
The Vodcasts and Podcasts created by you should be uploaded on your channel with an appropriate title and description and the link should be saved on a document. This helps you to easily track your eContent and it is safe on the cyberworld. Always save the materials created by you on the cloud as there is always a risk of losing materials saved on a USB or hard disk. Another big advantage is that the material is available 24 X 7 anytime anywhere.
Every teacher should have a blog of her own. You can easily create one using www.blogger.com with your Gmail id. This is the platform where you can deliver your eContent. I upload the Syllabus, Year Plan, eNotes, eBook, Assignments, Blue Print of the question paper, Answer Key, Sample Papers, Previous board papers etc. on my blog as hyperlinks. The materials are uploaded on my Google drive and the links are shared on the blog. The link to the Vodcasts/Vidcasts are also shared on the blog.
You have to arrange the eContent page wise with appropriate titles for the easy access by the students. The blog should be neatly organized otherwise students will be discouraged from using it. Each time you update the blog inform the class whatsapp/telegram group.If you are a class teacher it is good to maintain a class blog. It helps the parents to get a feel of what is happening in the class and school in general. You can maintain a Google Sheet for attendance. Google Forms to take feedback from students and parents. Google Docs for any collaborative work involving students or parents. You upload the Circulars under the eCircular link. The videos and photographs of social visit, study trips and picnics can also be posted here.
You can visit my blogs - http://informaticswithsumapaulmiss.blogspot.com/
Maintain a personal blog with clippings from various programmes conducted by you in the school, innovative practices in teaching or about your achievements. This will help you when you are appearing for an interview or aiming for an award. The evidences are crucial for the success in an interview or when you do a presentation before a Jury. This will also help you in preparing your performance appraisal form.
FLIPPED CLASS ROOM PEDAGOGY
This pedagogy encourages students to do research on a selected topic. They gather information from diverse sources. The teacher can prepare vodcasts or vidcasts and upload them on their Youtube channel and share the link on their blog. The eContent prepared by them can also be uploaded on the blog. This helps the students from derailing from the track when they do the research. In the class room a brainstorming session is carried out under the leadership of the teacher. The key points which came in the discussion can be displayed as a Mind Map on the smart board. This brainstorming session will help the students to clear all their doubts. After the brainstorming session students are taken to lab for the test. The test can also be issued in the class with question paper uploaded on the smart board.
A sample flipped classroom https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SF2ddqiJBJc&t=1404s
The online assessment is particularly helpful as a revision technique. I had prepared a number of online assessments to be used by the students during their study holidays before the 2019 board exams, particularly for the output type of questions in my subject Informatics Practices. This was highly useful for the students. I prepared the online assessment forms using Proprofs. The Proprofs quizzes are created using https://www.proprofs.com/
You can login with your Gmail Id and choose quizzes or create quizzes from scratch. This will work extremely well with multiple choice questions rather than essay type or short answer type questions.
Here is a sample worksheet created by me using proprofs.
This can be used to organize the various activities of the class. If you share the same with the students of your class, they will get reminders regarding the assignment submissions, assessments, seminars etc. You can also prevent clash in project submission dates and assessment dates. You can also share the link on your class blog.
You can create a google calendar by logging on to the site with your gmail account.
This is extremely useful when you want to take a class online, you can invite your students to the online class by sending the link. They can also actively participate in the teaching learning process by clicking on the link. Holidays or weekends you can keep aside a time slot for conducting the online lessons to keep the students engaged with learning. You can create online whiteboard using twiddla. https://www.twiddla.com/
You can download openboard from http://openboard.ch
OpenBoard is the best interactive whiteboard for schools and universities.
Students may find communicating during an online discussion more comfortable rather than a face-to-face interaction. They may understand the content better as they get a chance to interact with the teacher and clear their doubts which they could not do in the classroom.
OpenMeetings is a free browser-based software that allows you to set up instantly a conference in the Web. You can use your microphone or webcam, share documents on a white board, share your screen or record meetings.
MEMBERSHIP ON ONLINE EDUCATIONAL FORUMS
Get membership in online educational forums like Coursera, Codechef, Microsoft,Google For Education, Schools Online etc. All the courses on schools online are free courses. MOOCS offers a wide range of free online courses. The other educational forums give free courses for beginners. Recently I completed the self-learning Online course on Understanding Open Educational Resources offered by the Commonwealth of Learning, Canada. The course is available at https://learnoer.col.org.
FUNCTIONAL RESEARCH/ACTION RESEARCH
I had taken up a year-long Action Research on the topic how to make learning of computer programming a delightful experience for the students. The research helps you to find solution for a difficult situation you face in your class room teaching. You have to analyse the problem, establish that it is not an isolated problem but faced by other teachers also. You can appoint mentors from your school environment or outside to guide you. Collaborate with other teachers from your school and outside to arrive at a solution to the problem. Gather evidences to prove that the techniques found out by you where fruitful in solving the problem. Online Action Research or Functional research are offered from time to time by British Council and NCERT. It will help you to introspect on your pedagogical practices and make necessary changes wherever required so as to improve the learning environment and performance of your students.
Apps can be downloaded for various purposes from the play store and can be used as an effective teaching aid. I use a current affairs app to update general knowledge and shared the link of the same with the students of our Quiz Club.
CHALLENGES IN THE USE OF ICT
Teachers will have to do a lot of homework before implementing ICT in the classroom. The younger generation are much smarter than us in the use of technology, so we may have to listen to them or take their help in the choice of technology enabled teaching aids. The 21st century teacher has to be flexible and ready to adapt to the changing environment. They should keep their ears and eyes open to the changes happening in the global scenario and should be quick to implement it. The teacher should be a constant learner to answer the queries raised by the students. She should experiment with the tools developed using emerging technologies like augmented reality and artificial intelligence. A teacher should keep a good rapport with the parents and students, only then she can see to it that the students are using the technology effectively. Parent monitoring is required at home to see to it that the students are online for gathering information and not to while away the time by being hooked on to chat forums and gaming.