education & tech

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Education + Tech

Education & Tech, was created to build hope that education based on social technologies, can transform the new century, and enable abundance not only spiritually but economically. Milton Ramirez, Ed.D. - @tonnet is the founder & editor. He is a teacher, tech blogger, writes on education, and hails this blog from Union, NJ. For further questions, tips or concerns please e-mail him to:miltonramirez [at] educationandtech [dot] com

Teacher + Scholar

If you are a regular to Blog Education & Tech, you shall remember that I am a blogger and I'd written a post about education almost everyday since 2003. Education & Tech provides you with education news, expert tech advice, classroom management ideas, and social media tools for educators, administrators, parents and k-12 students.

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How Innovative Technologies Serve to Increase the Effectiveness of the Learning Process

3D molecular atom
By Olga Minenkova*

It has been proven long ago that innovative technologies serve to increase the effectiveness of the learning process.

The research conducted a couple years ago by Professor Dr. Anne Bamford, Director of the International Research Agency, proved a positive effect of the use of 3D presentations on the information perception by students during the learning process. According to the published articles, the use of interactive 3D presentations in the learning process has a steady positive effect. An 86% of students showed better results of understanding and memorizing the teaching material after viewing the information in 3D format compared to those who worked with traditional two-dimensional learning aids.

No one can deny that 3D educational model is truly visionary and can provide full level of interactivity. And this new level of interactivity guarantees 3D a real future in education. It offers a glimpse of how 21st education can look like, breathing new life into an ageing curriculum.

What are the other advantages of 3D over traditional methods of learning?

    • Speed and depth of knowledge acquisition by students. The use of three-dimensional content lets the students quickly learn material, visualize and remember it.
    • 3D holds users’ attention twice as long as traditional 2D presentations. If student is wearing 3D glasses or is involved in interactive 3D presentation of material, it is likely that for some time his attention will be less distracted by his classmates and he will focus on the learning process.
    • 3D is something new and different in the classrooms. Children are into technology nowadays. And 3D offers something more sophisticated than just putting computers in the classrooms. Children should get different experience of learning the content.
    • Kids are very demanding nowadays and they expected top quality animations.
    • People learn best by doing or seeing. The research results show that the pupils have a strong preference for kinesthetic and visual learning.
    • The use of 3D technologies motivate students for self-directed learning, so they start reading books or even surfing the web to find out more about the lessons.
The use of educational tools in 3D is a remarkable method of teaching, which enables students to fully enhance their learning capabilities. It is a highly effective way of engaging and interacting students in the subject presented. High quality teaching in 3D generates and further reinforces students to gain additional knowledge of the subject matter.

There are several strategies how a teacher can implement 3D in the regular classroom.

    1. One of them is the use of 3D projection. It is comparatively easy to implement 3D animations into the regular classroom environment.

    Lifelike images provided by 3D projectors are able not only to grasp children’s attentions, but also to give an immersive, 360-degree view of data that previously could only be obtained with flat 2D images and videos. Now almost all 3D projectors are 3D ready. 3D technologies are simply implemented on devices based on DLP technology, which do not require additional adjustment and calibration. Main difference between 3D ready projectors and traditional projectors is the necessity to use 3D active glasses for viewing.

    2. Another method is the use of 3D learning software. Wide range of learning programs in 3D format include a variety of tools for teaching mathematics, physics, biology, chemistry, foreign languages, humanities and they offer great opportunities for teaching both school students and university students. There are a lot of free learning programs on the web, which use 3D content. Visual aids and materials in 3D format make the most difficult topics more apparent.
Here are just a few examples of how to use innovative visual technologies in the educational process:

3D solar system modeling
Astronomy: The most up-to-date 3D technologies can be used to show the objects of a solar system in an interactive and realistic manner. Solar system 3D simulators make it possible to easily move from one planet to another exploring their detailed physical & chemical information and 3D pictures, see their orbits, the sun and the moon from a point in space to which people could never go in real life. 3D technologies allows to present information in the most effective way.

Chemistry: 3D environment utilizes real-time 3D graphics that allow simulating complex or dangerous experiments, providing users with realistic but safe experiences. The 3D perception can also improve the understanding of a chemistry lesson (eg the 3D molecular forms of atoms). A 3D virtual environment for teaching chemistry adds more advantages to a traditional e-learning.

Physics: The use of 3D content in learning and teaching physics is a completely new way of exploring simple machines, mechanisms, dynamics, kinematics, thermodynamics, electricity and optics in 3D format. With 3D technologies students can get hands-on experience building, manipulating or investigating real-life 3D physics in computer generated environment, they can solve problems and even more.
3D computer generated physics object
Anatomy: 3D projections of body organs or interactive 3D presentations with anatomically accurate, high detail 3D model of human body provide students with the opportunity to easily explore anatomical structure of human body.

Conclusion

3D-Ace Studio agrees with a positive and exciting impact of 3D learning on students. It also provides high-quality 3D modeling services for different applications including educational software in 3D format for the use in classrooms. Its broad experience in 3D modeling allows them to create accurate and precise 3D models that will grasp the students’ attention.

Engage your students and give them a new source of inspiration!

(*) Olga Minenkova is a teacher of German by profession, Olga is now a marketing and research manager at www.3d-ace.com, 3D modeling and animation studio. She keeps track of the latest 3D trends and technologies, and does her own research on how the use of 3D technologies can influence difference spheres including education and science.

Education & Tech

Impact of Facebook and Twitter on Classroom Education

By Sarah Brooks*

Where the world of Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr intersects school age children who are hard at work in the classroom is a place of contradiction, debate, busy mouths and fingers and of vast overarching potential. While some may argue from the dark side of social media as it applies to students, which speaks from a place which touts distraction and lack of focus as the negative influences of media upon the school, the real power comes from the positive impact of social media upon the classroom. When the assets of social media are reined in and harnessed to act as a boon which aids students in their progression of knowledge, even the banes of internet media can be used as tools to connect modern day students with the technology of their time.

Let us take the indisputable king of social media, Facebook, and examine a few ways in which the site may be used as a beacon of education rather than a powerhouse of distraction. While many schools have chosen to ban the social networking site from their in house computers, students with their elbows deep in computer skills will no doubt find a tunnel or other way to get through to the site which provides them with an online identity, friends, photos, games, music and videos. So the question of whether Facebook is a presence in the student's lives is not the issue; the heart of the future of Facebook as it applies to students is maneuvering its influence from a position of fallen focus to an educational tool. When students or teachers form Facebook groups, a virtual space is created for a forum setting that can make way for after school discussions, extracurricular work, and online collaboration among students. Not only are students more likely to use a resource like Facebook because they are already plugged into it for their social lives, but they are more likely to extend their classroom time on Facebook school groups when working on homework or a project with their classmates.

The same is true for Twitter. Take, for example, students who choose to follow a hand picked collection of their role models, influences, and educational authorities on the site which allows for short bursts of news, announcements and text. When Twitter is utilized by a student who wishes to keep up with their favorite authors, teachers, musicians, or artists, they can gain insight and deepened awareness of what is going on in the lives of their personal or educational influences.

However, Twitter catch-up should be a game always played after the homework is done at the end of the school day. Most of the problems with distraction that spring up between students and their favorite websites are based on social media taking valuable time away from homework or classroom time. While it is likely necessary to keep student's hands off access to Facebook and Twitter during classroom hours when they are expected to be in full attention mode, educators must remember that the social media hubs do have their place and can help make books and learning both cool and popular in the eyes of students.

Sparknotes, for example, is a social and educational site dedicated to students and by students who are searching for user-friendly supplement to their classes. Sparknotes supports both Facebook and Twitter which gives students a way to access bite size bits of news about online learning guides, testing, aids, and book notes. Educators who choose to utilize the resources of Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr rather than shunning these valuable social media tools to the back of the closet not only gain favor in the eyes of their students, but ensure that they are keeping up with the proverbial Joneses in terms of education and technology.

(*) Sarah Brooks writes from Freepeoplesearch.org. She is a Houston based freelance writer and blogger. Questions and comments can be sent to: brooks.sarah23 [at] gmail [dot] com

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