K-12 Education Market Faces New Requirements
The latest CDC guidelines highlight the major challenges administrators and educators have for reopening schools. The general principle – the more interactions, the longer interactions, the higher the risk of #COVID-19 spread.
The CDC states that the risk of COVID-19 spread increases in school settings as follows:
Lowest Risk: Students and teachers engage in virtual-only classes, activities, and events.
More Risk: Small, in-person classes, activities, and events. Groups of students stay together and with the same teacher throughout/across school days and groups do not mix. Students remain at least 6 feet apart and do not share objects (e.g., hybrid virtual and in-person class structures, or staggered/rotated scheduling to accommodate smaller class sizes).
Highest Risk: Full sized, in-person classes, activities, and events. Students are not spaced apart, share classroom materials or supplies, and mix between classes and activities.
As a result, the following five trends are expected in the classroom and will require different tools, approaches, and cultural shifts:
Apple’s provided a broad base of educator tools over the years through the new Schoolwork 2.0, Collaboration, Shared iPad, Assessment Mode, and Classroom (see Figure 1).
Schoolwork is an iPad app that gives teachers and students the ability to support remote learning and classroom environments (see Figure 2). Released May 2020, the latest version of Schoolwork 2.0 improve the ability to share content with students, put key apps to use, track student progress, personalize coursework and instruction to student needs, and deliver instant feedback and collaboration tools. Students can check assignments on their iPad devices by class and due date. Teachers can check in to see how students are doing. Coursework, handouts, and assignments can be managed. Teacher workflows can be optimized.
Schoolwork is pretty intuitive as educators can see their classes, students, and handouts. Teachers start with the creation of handouts. Students will see Handouts for all their classes in the dashboard and can track by class and due date. Files are automatically organized in iCloud Drive for the teacher and student.
One feature that stands out is the collaboration capability with Apple’s apps: Pages, Keynote, Numbers. Teachers in real-time can view, edit, add comments, record audio when students are working in a collaborative file. The result – coaching, real-time feedback, and interactive learning.
Figure 2. Inside Apple’s New Schoolwork
Source: Apple, Inc.
The Apple Classroom app for iPad and Mac enable teachers to manage the class room, share activities and work, manage student devices, and monitor progress. Using one-to-one or shared environments, educators have the ability to augment their daily classroom workflows (see Figure 4).
Teacher start by creating a class. If the school is using mobile device management (MDM), the classes may be configured automatically. Once student are invited, teachers can manage how their iPad’s are managed and what apps they have access to. Teachers can organize their classroom by creating break out groups or one-on-one experiences. From launching and locking apps, to navigating to specific content, to sharing documents, and receiving documents, teachers have full control curriculum and content management for the classroom.
Educators monitor progress and can view a student’s screen, check in on progress, mute the sound and lock the screen, share work onto an AppleTV. Apple Classroom enables device management where teachers can mute the sound, lock the screen, and even reset student passwords. Classroom with MDM supports shared iPads. Once a class ends, a summary is provided to share activity on student time, work completed, and overall student activity.
Figure 4. Classroom Provides Real Time Views
In addition, Apple has had a number of tools to improve student engagement such as:
The post pandemic learning environment can benefit from new tools and techniques to help educators in the classroom. Apple’s latest offerings bring the ease of use and user experience Apple’s known for with the much needed technology to improve the creation of curriculum, management of teacher workflows, and student engagement required in hybrid classroom modalities. The push to remote learning and the need to switch modalities require key technology tools and a community network to share ideas. Constellation recommends that K-12 educators, administrators, and technology teams consider Apple’s offering in vendor selection short lists.
Are you an educator working on remote learning? Are you using Apple’s K-12 capabilitieas? Will you be ready to handle the coronavirus and other pandemics? Ready to build your post pandemic playbook? Let me know, we can help! Add your comments to the blog or reach me via email: R (at) ConstellationR (dot) com or R (at) SoftwareInsider (dot) org.
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