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Àngels Soriano: Student Voice- Technology for Participation and Empowerment

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by Àngels Soriano
Expert Educator Columnist, Spain

The contact our students are having with technology is increasingly done at younger ages. Even our daily habits are linked to the use of technology. It is clear that the classroom can’t be out of this world and has incorporated information technology and communication in the day. A second step was to use this technology for our students to construct their own knowledge, that create content where tools like OneNote obtained an exceptional role in the ability to adapt to the needs you want to raise students.

Some sectors are considering a perspective that proposes a step in the use of technology, which is the application for participation and empowerment of the user, in our classrooms, offering students the chance to hear his voice, offering them to be the protagonists of their learning. We as teachers have a number of tools at our disposal, which offer our students this opportunity. We plan activities for this.

A good example would be the use of OfficeMix to review contents worked. Why not leave it to themselves, their fellow proponents questions? We could even use the tool in the event that a student is unable to regularly attend the center, and we perform oral presentation we asked. The application of the tool is varied, not only from the use as teaching students but still the users.

Another tool with great potential to hear the voice of our students is Sway, it will design and personalize content editor, where you can edit videos, photos, text. We are able to encourage our students to make oral presentations of any work using this tool: a digital summary of any school visit or activity and evidently share it on social networks.

I like the capabilities of social networks, which I use in the classroom. In my view, they are a fundamental axis to provide empowerment and participation – beyond a classroom – in a community. Some examples could be Twitter or Instagram. For example, we ask our students to share fragments of the readings being made, or share their opinions to establish a conversation with peers, or even with other young people who live in the same city, if we talk about Twitter; Moreover we ask our students to use Instagram to make photographs to accompany the pieces of reading, so it catches their attention … everything is possible, and in their hands (they have smartphone), but they need a teacher like you to set them the challenge to develop 21st century skills and content of the curriculum.

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As a languages teacher, I use the social network Twitter in the higher grades, to grant that role to students, especially in the assessment of the reading process. This academic year, with younger we are working to create content in the class of Latin language for content mythology and society. We shared one OneNote, where students will edit the final content after a search process, analysis, collaboration and review. The result we will have a final course since it is an annual project.

I would encourage you to use these tools to hear the voice of your students, who are they, who build their own challenges and achieve their progress.

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