Can EdTech really save teachers time?

Exams are finally over, and just before you let loose for the Summer, you might be thinking about next year. Your teaching is of course the centre of your pupils’ classroom learning, but with more EdTech companies springing up, how can you know which will really enhance learning and save you time?

This year, the government announced a new strategy to boost the use of EdTech in schools. Damian Hinds, the Secretary of State for Education, recently stated,

“technology can be an effective tool to help reduce workload, increase efficiencies, engage students and communities, and provide tools to support excellent teaching and raise student attainment.”

This belief has formed the basis of the new strategy, and their new partnership with Nesta to find and invest in new innovations in EdTech. Assessment, essay marking, parental engagement and timetabling are the four key areas the fund aims to address, and it’ll be really interesting to see what new technologies rise up as a result.

In the meantime, though, there are lots of apps and schemes out there that can make a positive impact in your classroom. Whether to save you admin time or to enhance learning during lessons, there are all sorts of amazing options out there.

But with so much choice, how can you decide what to try? Here we’ve put together a roundup of our favourite EdTech innovations from the last year. Tweet us (tagging @mytutor) to let us know any which you swear by that aren’t in the list!

Top 15 EdTech resources of 2019:

1. Firefly
2. Arbor
3. Remind
4. TedEd
5. Khan Academy
6. Wakelet
7. ClassDojo
8. Microsoft Educator
9. Adobe Spark
10. MyTutor Schools Programme
11. Raspberry Pi Projects
12. Kahoot!
13. Google Arts & Culture
14. Smart History
15. Matific

1. Firefly

Recommended by our Managing Director, Schools, James Grant, this excellent software and app lets you plan lessons, set homework and communicate with parents. The admin time saved by having everything in one place lets you give more of your day to what’s most important – your teaching.

2. Arbor

This data analytics programme lets you track and measure pupils’ grade attainment and progress. As well as that, you can record absences, good (or bad) behaviour and a load of other key progress points, all in one place.

3. Remind

A really popular innovation from the US, Remind lets you share resources and set work for pupils with ease. You can also use it to message parents so they’re up-to-date with how their child’s doing and what’s expected of them.

4. TedEd

This awesome free resource is a bank of thousands of high quality, professionally produced educational videos and animations. From Greek Myths to Geography, you can present these to your class and add your own notes, interactive questions and class activities. Using the TED Masterclass, you can even train your pupils in public speaking by planning TED-style talks.

5. Khan Academy

Although geared to US curriculums, this hugely popular treasure trove of Maths and Science resources has lots of overlaps with what we teach in the UK. Full of free interactive exercises at Primary and Secondary level, it’s an invaluable way to get your pupils learning with technology.

6. Wakelet

An online resource collection and sharing website and app, Wakelet is perfect for keeping all of the online learning material you find in one place. You can then easily refer to it in lessons and share it with your pupils, who can use it for homework and revision.

7. ClassDojo

This high-tech toolkit is your go-to for activity managing in-class, rewarding good behaviour and communicating with parents. Pupils can use it on computers and iPads, while you can manage everything on any device including your phone. Messages can even be translated into over 30 messages so non-English speaking parents can stay in the loop too.

8. Microsoft Educator

A huge and varied piece of software, Microsoft Educator lets you plan lessons, track achievement, make presentations and interactive activities, to name just a few of its features. It also includes Skype for the Classroom, which lets your class meet guest speakers or have “interactive field trips” from anywhere in the world.

9. Adobe Spark

This really fun app lets you tap into your inner artist. It has a series of easy-to-use templates with which you can make beautiful visual learning resources, posters, handouts and revision cards for your pupils.

10. MyTutor Schools Programme

With our schools programme, MyTutor brings excellent one-to-one online tuition to teens all across the UK. We’re already partnered with 350 schools, who use our tuition to reinforce their own teaching in a one-to-one setting. We see an average of a whole grade’s improvement in a term’s worth of lessons.

illustration-teens-on-computers-online-tuition

With MyTutor, pupils receive one-to-one online tuition in school.

11. Raspberry Pi Projects

For the tech innovators of tomorrow, Raspberry Pi is a fantastic learning programme that helps you teach kids to code. With a whole host of free learning videos for everything from HTML to wiring your own robot, you can equip your pupils with invaluable skills for the modern world.

12. Kahoot!

For every pop quiz lover out there, with Kahoot! you can make quizzes and games for any subject. They’re really fun to make, and your pupils will love you for it too.

13. Google Arts & Culture

If you teach any humanities subject, this huge and free library of art, history and culture is a must. You can use it to make lesson plans or recommend it to pupils for any independent research project. The breadth of topics and stories in there is perfect for sparking interest and inspiring a passion for learning.

14. SmartHistory

Another perfect cultural resource to recommend for homework research and class projects. SmartHistory spans Art, History and Classics, and it even has a series of 2-hour courses that sum-up big topics clearly and succinctly.

15. Matific

A big resource of professionally produced games and learning activities, Matific makes your Maths lessons really fun and interactive. By interweaving this technology with your teaching, you also help set your pupils up for life by growing their computer literacy.

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