Although it’s not the same as being together in one room, people have been able to come together through the power of technology in 2020. Due to the pandemic, students are learning remotely, workers are telecommuting, and holiday get-togethers are taking place online to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19. While it has been an adjustment with many challenges to move many of our activities online, there is also great opportunity being presented this year with new achievements in virtual togetherness.
At our Thrive Together: Creating the Classrooms of Tomorrow webinar, leaders in the education and design industries shared insight about how technology is changing the way we learn, work, and socialize. Considering their insight, here are a few examples of how we are finding togetherness through technology this year.
Learning at a Distance Will Change Classrooms for Good
Chloe Hosid is a design researcher at Corgan. She presented in the second session of our webinar, which was all about design aspects of classrooms of the future. She pointed out that technology is impacting learning in major ways. Interactive technology, like smartboards that cast to devices, and virtual technology will likely be staple of classrooms going forward. This is in part because of the nature of the pandemic and the increased need for distance and remote learning. It’s also because the definition of active learning is evolving. Collaborative experiences can be found even from a distance with the right technology. As Chloe pointed out so eloquently, “With education, it’s very important to engage active use of technology. Real, hands-on experiences are vitally important.”
Increased Need for Tech May Create Increased Opportunity
Remote learning has not been successful for all American students throughout the pandemic, with 15 million of them lacking access to internet and the devices needed to learn from home. But COVID-19 created an awareness to those without access, who will need to be considered a priority for schools to successfully educate remotely.
Although vaccines may soon be available to the public and this pandemic will end, the ability to learn remotely will be helpful in a number of events. For example, “snow days” may now be a thing of the past. Although it’s customary for students to take off school on days with inclement weather, remote learning technology may have created an opportunity for students to learn even on the worst weather days. The technology to keep kids engaged from home and learning already exists. As Eanes ISD Superintendent Tom Leonard said, “Technology has gotten so much better and I think that will really serve our kids.” It's just a matter of making sure that everyone has access to that same technology.
Online Gatherings Mean Caring for Others
It can be difficult to stay away from holiday parties and gatherings this time of year. As Angie Stutsman of Corgan pointed out, “Symptoms of depression and anxiety are on the rise”. The pandemic has created feelings of isolation for both kids and adults. And while online gatherings and meetings between friends will never be the same as commingling in person, plenty of fun can be had with interactive technology that allows groups of people to come together virtually.
This year, Secret Santa exchanges may happen via videoconference and students may have class holiday parties through online learning platforms. And although it’s not always as satisfying, we can feel uplifted by the fact that the CDC says that online celebrations are the safest way to minimize risk and to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Even though we may be giving up our holiday traditions for one year, we may also be keeping others safe.
We’re Here to Help…
Are you in need of updated technology for your classroom or school? MooreCo has been creating conscious classroom environments for over 35 years. Because of the increased need for superior technological products for successful teachers and students, MooreCo is proud to partner with i3Technologies to offer the best in innovative technology for schools and the workplace.
Throughout this year, districts have depended on us for interactive smart boards, educational software, and we’re excited to introduce i3's new air-quality monitor that will help keep students and workers healthy. Please check out our offerings for the new year and contact us if you have any questions. Although this year has separated us in many ways, we can continue to come together to find solutions for a common purpose and to celebrate a wonderful year yet to come.
Topics: Active Learning, Human Development, Active Classroom, Designer's Corner, Working from Home, Technology, Covid-19, Back-to-school, learning from home, hybrid classroom, remote, hybrid, i3sixty, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Expert Analysis