Why video creation encourages classroom innovation

Think about how students today communicate outside of school–so much of it is video-based, and if educators can meet students in that space, they’ll be able to create more engaging and impactful lessons. In the TikTok, Instagram Video and Snapchat era, video creation has also provided the perfect medium to encourage and empower intuitive content creation in classroom environments.

Some of the best educational content develops with creative thinking and a willingness to try new things–and if teachers and students have the right tools, they’re on the right path.

Learn more during this eSchool News webinar featuring educators and edtech experts who can speak to how video lets teachers gauge student understanding, enables students to access content at their own pace, and more.
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Why active learning environments are key to student engagement

Technology’s pivotal role in education can’t be denied, and it will remain a constant in classrooms. Many schools are turning to active learning environments to effectively use technology to help engage students in learning.

When students are engaged in their learning via active learning environments, they absorb more content and they intuitively explore concepts at a deeper level.

Join a panel of educators and experts as they tell eSchool News how they have created immersive classrooms in their schools. You’ll discover insights on renovations that turned classrooms into active learning environments, and you’ll learn how one school has been using these learning environments since 2013.…Read More

10 cool AR and VR tools for the classroom

We all know that augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are super fun, but AR and VR tools can also be incredibly powerful when integrated into classroom learning.

What’s the difference? AR is the idea that the user brings something into their real world and using a device to see something that isn’t actually there–animation or 3D images come into the real world. VR immerses a person in the experience, as if they’re actually there.

AR and VR tools have a number of benefits for students, and because the tools are engaging, students are more likely to absorb classroom lessons and concepts. Plus, students are engaged in active learning with AR and VR tools.…Read More

How to create engaging active learning environments

Technology plays a pivotal role in classrooms, and as it becomes more sophisticated, educators realize that creating active learning environments can help them effectively and efficiently use technology engage students in their learning.

What’s your edtech plan post-COVID? Join this eSchool News webinar to learn how to assess your classrooms and ensure they are immersive, engaging, and embracing active learning practices.

You’ll learn from a team of experts and educators who can share important insights on the practices and components of active learning. Join today!…Read More

MiEN Company Releases New Guide on Creating Active Learning Spaces

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – June 23, 2021 – During the pandemic, schools rapidly adopted technology and flexible learning models so they could better support students. Now, many district administrators are deciding to keep those flexible models when the pandemic ends. To help educators make the most of new teaching strategies and tools, MiEN Company has published “ A Guide to Creating Dynamic Active Learning Spaces.”

“Increased levels of technology have made the traditional arrangement of desks and front-of-the-classroom focus unnecessary,” said Dr. Christina Counts, Vice President of Education for MiEN Company. “Even before the pandemic, there was a growing shift toward giving students more opportunities to practice the ‘four Cs’ – creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, and communication. Active learning environments are much better suited to supporting the development of four C skills as well as others like computational thinking, growth mindset, resilience and leadership.”

The guide describes the many advantages of flexible and mobile learning spaces. Among the research that it cites is Baylor University’s finding that “when classroom layouts are designed thoughtfully, learning environments have been shown to facilitate student-centered teaching leading to improved student engagement.” It also shares a quick case study of how New Albany High School in Indiana transformed a media center into a multi-purpose room and the accompanying benefits.…Read More

5 essentials for an active learning classroom

Identified by EDUCAUSE as a top strategic technology, active learning classrooms (ALCs) go beyond just outfitting learning spaces with technology. These engaging, dynamic spaces provide new pedagogical opportunities, support active learning, and help students develop relevant skills.

In 2020, the pandemic forced rapid adoption of school-based technology within a compressed time frame. Most students now have mobile devices, while schools have been teaching in a rotation of remote, in-person, and hybrid learning models. And, more district administrators are using blended learning as they infuse technology with more flexible learning models.

The traditional classroom model has been turned on end, with the arrangement of desks and front-of-the-classroom focus becoming obsolete and unnecessary. In its place are dynamic, flexible, and mobile learning spaces that support student-centered teaching, collaboration, and engagement.…Read More

MiEN Company Releases White Paper on How Flexible Furniture Creates Active Learning Environments

Districts and schools are increasingly adopting active learning practices in order to address businesses’ demand for employees capable of creative and collaborative work. But one commonly overlooked factor in this transition is classroom design. However, research shows that the physical space that supports active learning is quite different from one designed for lecture-focused teaching. To help educators, Dr. Christina Counts, the vice president of education at MiEN Company, and Dr. Kristen Brittingham, the chief learning officer for Modern Teacher, have co-authored a white paper titled “Active Learning Environments Support Student Engagement, Collaboration, and Critical Thinking.”

Active learning not only promotes student engagement and the development of critical thinking and collaboration but also creativity and communication all of which are skills that employers are seeking. The paper focuses on research regarding the role of active learning environments in the development of these critical skills.

“Classrooms need to become active learning environments supported by technology integration,” said Brittingham. “So, the physical makeup of the classroom needs to change in order to support active learning environments. Unfortunately, most classrooms look the same as they did 20-30 years ago. We need changes in classroom design that mirror the new emphasis on collaboration in education and in today’s workplace.”…Read More

MiEN Company Introduces New Furniture Product Offerings to Solve Learning Space Challenges

Educators are rethinking the layout of classrooms and other learning spaces in terms of optimizing use of those spaces for student wellbeing and study. MiEN Company, a global company serving the education industry with innovative furniture products and services that promote and support active and interactive learning environments, has introduced four new product offerings to help institutions take active learning spaces to a new level.

“These offerings are easily moved around, and many can be quickly stacked out of the way when not in use. This means users can configure them into arrangements that allow for social distancing as needed,” said Dr. Christina Counts, Vice President Strategy & Development for MiEN Company. “Of course, that’s not the only challenge that educators have to consider, and I can confidently say that these products can help learning environments adapt to changing pedagogical demands for years to come.”

The Always Ready Cafe & Hospitality (ARCH) Collection
The ARCH Collection of chairs, stools, tables and lateral files is designed for secondary, collegiate or corporate environments. The collection items are designed to be functional, practical to use, easy to move around and to stack. In addition, they are naturally durable so they can withstand high traffic use.…Read More

7 discoveries from an active learning classroom

There is a fair amount of research into the impact of classroom design on student learning. Spaces flooded with natural light that allow for a variety of learning methods and activities, and spaces that let students feel a sense of ownership over the classroom, demonstrably affect how well students learn.

Active learning applies a similar principle, including minimizing institutional barriers like teacher lecterns, fixed and stagnant furniture, and limited student exposure to real-world experiences. Through active learning, the teacher gradually releases control to the students, encouraging them to become independent learners.

Four years ago, I became an inaugural recipient of a Steelcase Education Active Learning Center Grant. The renovated classroom and colorful mobile chairs and desks provided by the grant have literally transformed my practice, my seventh-grade language arts students, and their families. Test scores, homework completion, and grades have soared and parents who had never visited their student’s classroom now volunteer regularly. My research in our active learning classroom (ALC) over the past three years led me to discover seven elements critical to student success.…Read More