In schools around the globe, the traditional classroom is evolving to take advantage of the new digital tools available to meet the needs of today’s tech-savvy students.
Read on to learn more about how digital technology in the classroom enhances the learning experience, encourages student engagement and empowers educators.
What is a digital classroom?
The digital classroom incorporates electronic devices and software into the learning environment.
Key elements of a digital classroom include:
Devices: provide computers, laptops, tablets or smartphones to access digital resources, participate in interactive activities and complete assignments.
Internet connectivity: allow online access to materials, collaboration and virtual interaction.
Educational software and apps: create digital lessons, activities and assessments.
Digital content: make educational materials available digitally.
Collaboration and communication tools: enable seamless communications and interactions with online platforms and applications.
These tools can expand the potential for collaboration, extend access to resources and enable continued work outside of the physical classroom space.
Typical uses of digital tools in the classroom include teachers creating and sharing lessons via iPads, students completing assignments on shared or one-to-one devices and off-site access of resources and communication via internet connection.
Benefits of a digital classroom
The digital classroom transforms the learning experience for students by offering:
Enhanced engagement and interactivity
Personalized learning tailored for individual needs and abilities
Expansive access to digital resources and self-directed learning
Time and location flexibility, enabling students to learn at their own pace
Opportunities for global collaboration and exposure to diverse perspectives
Real-time feedback and assessment
To learn more about how this works in practice, read about how Apple and Jamf empowered students in Taiwan with world-class digital classrooms.
Challenges of a digital classroom
The digital classroom offers many advantages for students but there can be obstacles to successful implementation.
Common concerns include:
Technology access – limited or inconsistent access to devices and the internet
Digital literacy – varying levels of how much users understand digital tools
Privacy concerns – how to keep students safe online
While the importance of providing equivalent technology for every user is crucial for reaching every learner’s potential, effective teacher training is also important.
One of the advantages of using Apple devices such as iPads is the abundance of free training offered for educators: part of the initial device purchase investment includes free training from Apple Education Community, Jamf Educator and Apple Professional Learning.
And no less important: because this technology provides access to internet exploration, it requires a plan to keep students safe online. Jamf Teacher enhances the standard approach to content filtering by offering classroom-level controls, including providing specific web links to encourage exploration in a safe environment of specifically-allowed sites.
Digital classroom tools
Technology that is effectively used in modern classrooms includes:
Apple devices and software
Apple empowers student and educator success with powerful, intuitive tools that encourage creativity: including iPad, Mac and Apple TV devices.
As Apple devices have a lower long-term cost of ownership with higher resale value when compared with others, schools around the world are offering iPads to students.
When both teachers and students use the same devices, it supports good classroom management and a shared understanding of the device's potential.
Google Classroom is an all-in-one tool enabling educators and students to engage together in lessons and coursework. Google Classroom can be learned in minutes; it helps educators manage their instruction and grade more efficiently. It features seamless integrations with other Google Workspace for Education tools like Drive, Calendar and Meet as well as popular third-party EdTech tools. Google Classroom gives educators streamlined ways to create enriching student experiences that make each lesson more personal.
Behind every effective technology deployment is a system that makes management and security work.
Jamf School is a mobile device management (MDM) system for efficient classroom management enabling:
Set up and organization of classes
Connection with other teachers
Communication with students
Configuration for specific or shared users
Assignment of specific apps as well as content to devices
Jamf School enables teachers to set up specific content for the correct classes at the right times, which makes it possible to offer age- and subject-appropriate content when and where it is needed. The end result: teachers can focus on using the devices, not how to set them up.
Jamf Safe Internet
Jamf Safe Internet provides educators piece of mind for students working online. When students search online, educators can trust that learners are protected from accessing inappropriate content. Filtering tools are simple to set up, with options for predefined settings including not only gaming, gambling and adult search but also additional customization for needs based on the age or stage of the learner.
Jamf Safe Internet also goes beyond content filtering and into threat prevention. It protects users and networks from the risks of phishing attacks, malware and ransomware – dangers that can cause issues with wider implications for institutions beyond the classroom.
The role of teachers in a digital classroom
In the "traditional classroom," a teacher’s role has been to provide content for learners and to help them understand context and application.
But in the digital classroom, technology gives educators an opportunity to become more of a guide— to encourage independent thought and discovery that can lead to a deeper understanding of what the content means for each individual learner.
Technology also offers opportunities to express an understanding of the content in new ways, from video to audio or other imagery. As educators use technology to encourage self-directed learning, students are empowered to take more responsibility for their learning.
Beyond the traditional classroom, technology also provides opportunities to offer new learning spaces, meeting students’ individual needs for where and when they learn best.
It’s essential for educators to have access to classroom management tools to empower students to use devices in and outside of the classroom.
By using the combination of Apple Classroom and Jamf Teacher, educators are empowered to provide simple and quick access to the resources that allow this type of learning while also monitoring student progress and support from a distance.
Training and support for educators
For classrooms to successfully evolve to a digital model, schools should also plan how to support and train their educators.
Teachers may need to not only learn new skills such as tech proficiency and online moderation but also how technology provides new ways to share content, assess understanding and promote new thinking.
The future of digital classrooms
The pandemic taught us that learning doesn’t have to be restricted by space and time. As the “traditional classroom” continues to evolve with increased investment in education technology, what can we expect future learning to look like?
We are seeing new schools that further blur the line between education and work. These innovators don’t simply replicate workplaces but also use technology in ways that enhance collaboration beyond borders. Learners can engage with experts from around the world and showcase learning that meets industry needs. In many cases, they can even inspire new thinking in the world around them.
When students receive the right tools, they can be real change-makers in the years to come.
Make the most of the digital revolution with Jamf
Jamf helps schools deliver a secure, active learning environment to everyone with iPad, Mac and Apple TV devices.
Manage and secure Apple in education with a free trial of Jamf School.
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