With the announcement that all schools will be going back in September, teachers are gearing themselves up for a big change in classroom sizes and structure. Students and staff who are unwell will be encouraged to stay away from school. Desks will be front-facing and contact between students and staff, and between students will be minimised depending on children’s ability to distance, the layout of the school and the feasibility of keeping distinct groups separate while offering a broad curriculum (especially at secondary level). This ‘new normal’ for schools creates tricky obstacles to overcome.
This is where technology can help. While children may have had the chance to use Microsoft Teams from home during lockdown, they can now use it in the classroom as well. Some of the new features that schools have been crying out for include:
7x7 video grids for classroom experience
The recent update from Microsoft now allows up to 49 videos to be displayed on screen at once to provide teachers with an immersive experience when working with a full classroom. In cases where children have to study from home, they are able to join the classroom, so they can learn at the same time as other classmates.
Teachers can set work for groups of students in Teams’ Breakout Rooms. Students working on key projects or assignments can group together in their own breakout room to discuss concepts and collaborate on their projects.
With so many platforms now available, some teachers are doing even more administration to ensure students are completing their coursework. With Class Insights, teachers can use intelligent data analytics tools to highlight a student’s learning journey, how they engage in class and when they complete assignments.
While the school must track student attendance, doing them remotely can be challenging. You can download the attendee report from Teams in a quick Excel spreadsheet to know who has attended a class, who hasn’t and who might need a copy of the recording to catch up.
While some of these features might seem insignificant to many of us, for teachers they can be real time savers while trying to ensure students get the education they need.
Find out more about Microsoft Teams for schools in our recorded webinar or contact us directly to arrange a 1:1 demonstration for you.