Standalone iClass App Launches This Week

iClass, the number one website and mobile app solution for schools, is pleased to announce the launch of the standalone version of the iClass App this week.

The iClass App transforms how schools communicate with parents and staff, providing an ‘always on’ solution that simplifies communications and eliminates the costs.

The standalone iClass App features all the benefits of the desktop version of iClass content management system including:

  • News posting and categorising
  • Live publishing articles to parents
  • Video and gallery hosting
  • File sharing
  • Free messaging
  • Online permission slip submission
  • And more

Click here for more information about the iClass App.

How 5G Will Impact VR/AR

5G network connectivity is set to transform wireless technology, but did you know it will also have a massive impact on educational technology?

A recent article from Edtech Magazine examined some of the different areas of edtech 5G will innovate when it starts rolling out to mobile devices next year, and noted its capacity for improving VR and AR technology.

For the unaware, the main benefits of 5G are increased network speeds and connectivity, greater device storage space and far lower latency than that of 4G networks.

VR and AR of course refers to virtual reality (computer generated worlds) and augmented reality (computer generated graphics on top of physical objects), two technologies that are starting to find use in multiple fields, including education.

As the article points out, current VR and AR devices are subject to latency, which can be problematic for teachers who wish to use the technology in the classroom.

Latency is simply a delay in data transfer, which manifests as stuttering frames and clipped audio, something which would obviously reduce the effectiveness of educational videos or games.

5G is expected to reduce latency to under 10 milliseconds, making it much more suitable for use with children of all ages.

Similarly, it will be much easier and faster to download VR and AR content, and 5G technology will also enable developers to build self-contained VR and AR devices that can stream content directly from the cloud.

This in turn will reduce the cost of such devices and make VR and AR much more accessible to teachers and their students.

5G wireless network connectivity is set to start rolling out to devices during the course of 2019.

iClassCMS at Microsoft Breakout

We are pleased to announced iClass will be exhibiting at the  Microsoft Breakout event at Thomand Park, Limerick, on Wednesday 7th of November.

Microsoft Breakout is a free event designed to show teachers how technology can be successfully used in the classroom for teaching and learning.

The event takes place at Thomand Park on Cratloe Road, Co. Limerick, from 8.30am – 13.00pm on Wednesday, 7th of November.

A range of experienced speakers will be on hand to discuss the latest classroom technology tools such as Class Notebook and Office365 on iPad and how they can be used to improve the teaching and learning experience for both teachers and students.

Refreshments and lunch will be served during the day and all attendees can avail of a complimentary tour around the Thormond Park Museum.

Visit the iClassCMS exhibitor stall at Microsoft Breakout to learn about iClass, the number one website and mobile app solution for schools.

With a best in class website that engages students and parents, and a fully integrated mobile app that enables schools and parents to communicate for free, iClass makes content management a quick a simple task.

Click here to register for Microsoft Breakout for free, and please get in touch if you would like to know more about iClass or participate in a free website review.

Reminder: iClass at NAPD Conference 2018

iClassCMS will be at this year’s National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals Conference 2018 at the Galmont Hotel & Spa, on Lough Atalia Road, Galway.

Taking place on Thursday, 18th, and Friday, 19th of October, the NAPD Conference 2018 is the biggest annual event for second level school leaders.

This year’s NAPD Conference features a range of workshops that offer advice and inspiration on how to approach the challenges second level schools face today, plus an excellent lineup of speakers discussing the biggest teaching issues and developments in Ireland and around the world.

iClass is launching a new partnership with NAPD during the conference, so make sure to visit the iClassCMS exhibition stall to learn more about our work with NAPD.

We’ll also have an exclusive offer available for NAPD Conference 2018 attendees and info about the iClassCMS platform and how it can benefit your school.

For more about the NAPD Conference 2018 including how to register, please visit napdconference.com.

For details about iClassCMS and how to avail of a free website review, click here.

Improve Parent Teacher Communication With iClassCMS

Scifest

Clear and regular communication between parents and teachers is one of the most important elements of a child’s education.

It ensures that parents are aware of their child’s progress in school and also helps to prevent any issues from developing.

Schools generally call or email when they want to communicate with parents, which can be costly methods of communication, especially in larger schools with greater numbers of students.

With iClassCMS however, schools can now get in touch with parents whenever they need to for free using the iClassCMS Mobile App for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets.

It saves money on stationary and phone bills, and allows schools to reach parents in an instant via the iClassCMS platform.

All iClassCMS schools benefit from this quick and easy method for communicating with parents, which completely eliminates costs and saves time and effort.

In addition to free messaging to parents, the iClassCMS Mobile App also allows schools to publish news articles and events in real-time, so parents can stay up to date with the latest information about their child’s school.

As parents face new challenges in today’s modern world, it helps to have a free and simple method for getting in touch with them.

Get in touch with us today to request a live iClassCMS demo or brochure.

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Analytics for Education

Education Analytics

Education Analytics

In recent years, the idea of big data analysis and analytics has taken the tech and business worlds by storm. Every action that we take online leaves a digital trail. There’s an increasing emphasis on software that can analyze this large volume of data. Because this analysis is so vast, it can reveal fascinating trends and patterns in consumer behavior.

Learning analytics is the synthesis of user (learner) created data to discover correlations and predict on future outcomes.

George Siemens presents a holistic model for learning analytics that incorporates not only student class performance data, but also elements from all areas of a student’s online life. Predictions based on analytics would lead to adaptation, personalization, and intervention in learning.

This process helps educators and administrators as well. Recorded student interactions in the VLE (virtual learning environment) can be used to help create more dynamic curriculum design. There is potential for the learning experience to be optimized for each student. The impact of any updates or changes can be easily tracked.

Education AnalyticsWhy Learn Analytics?

Learning analytics is scalable – teachers can implement the basic principles as a way for individual students to reflect on their growth and success. An example of this would be to create a table with all class assignments. For each assignment, students can record where they completed it as well as their level of understanding. This also would include the grade they received on the assignment. Learners will be able to identify their optimal environment to complete assignments and predict how well they will do on an assignment based on various factors.

Learning analytics and educational data mining are powerful tools for improving learner performance, but they come with some ethical debates. Can students’ privacy be preserved? Additionally, would a prediction of success or failure during a course help or hinder students learning?

Let us know what you think in the comments below!

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Tech Tuesday: Flipgrid

Flipgrid
It’s a new way to introduce yourself, to present ideas, and ultimately, a new way to learn.

Say hello to Flipgrid.

Flipgrid is an education technology application for teachers and students. Teachers start the video discussion. Students respond. It is a fun way for students to interact with their classmates.
This educational tool is an important up-and-coming technology application in the education world. One of the main reasons relates to communication. Flipgrid boasts many positive qualities, especially for communication skills.
Flipgrid
Most students today prefer talking through their phones instead of talking face-to-face. With Flipgrid, students are still able to communicate without talking face-to-face. Through the video format, communication does still occur. This provides a unique opportunity to improve public speaking skills. The inclusion of video provides teachers an opportunity to give feedback to every student’s response.
Not only does it create a more fun classroom environment, it will help to increase classroom engagement among students, as well.
You can learn more about integrating Flipgrid into your classroom by clicking here.

By Taylor

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Must-Watch TED Talks for Educators

Linda Cliatt - Wayman

Looking for a way to be productive during breaks in your day? TED talks are a fantastic way to discover bite-size inspiration! Here are a few of our favorite talks for educators.

 

“Success, failure, and the drive to keep creating” – Elizabeth Gilbert

Eat, Pray, Love author Elizabeth Gilbert talks about where inspiration can strike and the ways that she learned from her failures. She emphasizes the importance of staying true to oneself and learning from failures. Great motivation for Back to School!

 

“The difference between winning and succeeding” – John Wooden

UCLA Basketball Coach John Wooden talks both coaching and teaching, providing profound insight into what he found was the best way to inspire both his students and his players. This is a talk with knowledge and wisdom everyone should hear.

 

“Help for the kids the education system ignores” – Victor Rios

Talking from personal experience, Victor Rios shifts the perspective on the way we think of children who do not finish school. He talks of a teacher who inspired him to stick with school and graduate with his class. This talk is inspirational and it has the capability to transform your thoughts and encourage understanding of every type of student.

 

“How to fix a broken school? Lead fearlessly, Love hard” – Linda Cliatt-Wayman

School principal Linda Cliatt-Wayman has witnessed the struggles of urban public schools. But she is determined not to let the hardships deter her from giving her best to the students who show up to school each day. In this emotional talk, Wayman talks about what it takes to be an effective leader for the students who need it most.

 

“My story, from gangland daughter to star teacher” – Pearl Arredondo

In this emotional and personal TED Talk, Pearl Arredondo talks about her personal experiences, as well as how those specific experiences encouraged her to create a school with the specific purpose of reassuring students that they are cared for.

 

“Love letters to strangers” – Hannah Brencher

She’s not a teacher, and she doesn’t like technology. But she writes letters. She writes letters to strangers who need it. In doing so, she has inspired a movement whereby people write out how they feel instead of immediately resorting to social media. It’s an inspiring talk about the power of words and it might just inspire you to switch the smartphone for a pen and paper. 

 

 “Comics Belong in the Classroom” – Gene Luen Yang

Gene Yang, a secondary education teacher and comic book fan, noticed that there was a shortage of comic books in the education sector. He believes that comic books can have a place in education, especially for those students who learn better visually. In this humorous and innovative talk, Yang discusses the path he took to discovering that comics deserve a place in every classroom. 

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Get Inspired: EdTech Trends We Love

High school website in Dublin

Schools are rapidly adopting innovative strategies to boost student engagement and success rates. The use of technology in the classroom facilitates critical thinking, an enhanced learning experience, and student creativity. Here are some of our favorite trends in Education Technology. 

Maker Spaces

Maker Spaces are beginning to be seen in schools across the world. Featuring 3D printers, digital rendering software, art supplies, and more, they serve as a hub for student creativity. Pupils develop valuable STEAM skills while interacting with peers and teachers. While playing and working, students learn to problem-solve, design, and experiment in all areas of their life. Learn more about starting a Maker Space here.

Collaborative Learning

Research demonstrates that collaborative learning, whether in small groups or peer-to-peer, helps promote higher-level thinking in students. Students do not learn alone but strive towards learning in groups. This is especially helpful for learners in the 21st century as this is how many companies operate.

Teachers are taking collaboration to the digital level is with programs such as Google Drive, blogs, and video conferencing. Students are able to collaborate not just with their classmates, but on a global scale.

 

Gamification

Gamification in learning is an emerging teaching strategy based on the psychology of video games. Students are incentivized to learn and develop skills, boosting motivation and satisfaction. Gamification promotes active learning and engagement among students.

 

Seamless communication

Parents and pupils expect a seamless communications process between school and home. It’s what they experience in every other aspect of their life. To provide this, schools can use a platform like iClass, which allows for dynamic mobile messaging between parents and schools. With iClass, schools can manage all communications, including event registration, volunteer sign-ups, online publishing, and parent-teacher interactions. An intuitive communications process is critical for parent engagement and student success.

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Motivation Monday: 15 of Our Favorite Quotes on Teaching

Quote on future

1. “To teach is to learn twice over.” – Joseph Joubert

2. “A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” ~ Henry Brooks Adams

3. “Treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you help them become what they are capable of becoming.” ~ Goethe

4. “One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.” ―Malala Yousafzai

5. “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” – Malcolm X

6. “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” – William Butler Yeats

7. “The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you.” – B.B King

8. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

9. “Students don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”

10. “Teachers have three loves: love of learning, love of learners, and love of bringing the first two loves together.” – Scott Hayden

11. “A teacher has two jobs, fill young minds with knowledge, yes, but more important, give those minds a compass so that knowledge doesn’t go to waste.” – Mr. Holland’s Opus

12. “Every child deserves a champion – an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection, and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be.” – Rita F. Pierson

13. “If we are truly effective teachers, then we are creating autonomous, independent, and self-directed learners, not just successful test takers”. – Robert John Meehan

14. “If you really want to know about the future, don’t ask a technologist, a scientist, a physicist. No! Don’t ask somebody who’s writing code. No, if you want to know what society’s going to be like in 20 years, ask a kindergarten teacher.” – Clifford Stoll

15. “There is no system in the world or any school in the country that is better than its teachers. Teachers are the lifeblood of the success of schools.” – Ken Robinson