One day this past June, teachers gathered together in the Texas heat to view the latest and greatest in education technology. However, this was not a normal school supply shopping experience, but a playground where teachers could use and test new technologies all in one place.
Every summer in Austin, the Texas Independent School District puts together a “Technology Playground” showcase filled with the newest devices for education. All the products are set up at stations where teachers can actually interact with them, then comment on how these products could be used in the classroom. The goal of the playground is for teachers to evaluate how new devices support 21st century learning.
To obtain more ideas from real teachers on how Touchjet can be used in the classroom, our team provided them with a Touchjet Pond Projector™ to test out. Here are some of the suggestions that teachers who attended the Texas Independent School District Technology Playground had for using the Touchjet Pond:
Several teachers were interested in the Pond for coding sessions. One teacher mentioned that it could be used for collaborative sessions with students by using the following process:
- ENGAGE: The engagement activities would include the use of some of the “unplugged” activities and the videos presenting basic programming/coding concepts.
- EXPLORE: Students would work in small groups on the unplugged activities.
- EXPLAIN: At the end of the lesson, they would conduct a “Making Meaning” conference to check how everything worked, what the students learned, what strategies they used to work together and so on.
- ELABORATE: Then students would work in small groups using the devices.
- EVALUATE: Students would show their work using the Touchjet Pond and ask other students how to solve the same problems.
Writing and Language
On the other side of the spectrum, some teachers thought of ideas for writing and language courses. One teacher said: “As part of the Language Arts block, students rotate through different centers to reinforce, practice and enrich reading skills. The Touchjet Pond could be used as a computer center for students to use the A-Z app for learning the letters and sounds.”
Research and Presentation
The Touchjet Pond could even be used for research and presentation of findings. One teacher thought it would be a great tool for a writers’ workshop where students create a research paper about their favorite animals and use the Pond to search for information and present their findings to the entire class.
Then, of course, there were a few more creative use cases, like using Google Maps apps to teach students navigation. This would work by teachers putting in the destinations and explaining how to get from one point to another using coordinates. Students would then work with partners to pick a destination and explain in detail how to get there by driving.
These are just a few of the wonderful ideas that came out of the Technology Playground from teachers working with various grade levels and subjects.
Have you found any new and fun ways to use the Touchjet Pond for education? Leave a comment below to tell us more!