7 Cool Digital Tools To Boost K-12 Student Engagement
How do you get your students excited about learning?
With modern distractions like smartphones and social media, getting students engaged in the classroom can be a real challenge.
But it sure is important. After all, engaged students are statistically more likely to attend class, achieve academic success, and stay enrolled in school.
As educators, it is our duty to provide young minds with the most impactful learning experience possible. And often, that all starts with classroom engagement.
Luckily, modern technology has provided us with a wide array of digital teaching tools to help get students engaged and excited about learning.
1. Explore Google Maps to teach geography
Are you still using a world map poster to teach geography? Consider freshening up your lesson using Google Maps. Available as a smartphone app or web browser application, Google Maps is truly one of the most useful and practical inventions in human history.
From taking virtual field trips to exploring latitude and longitude, Google Maps allows students to interact with in-depth, intricate features of our planet, Earth. With Google Earth Overlays, students can see actual 360 images of virtually any location all across the globe.
Not only does this help students learn common core geography principles, but it also allows a more dynamic cultural experience to encourage inspiration creativity.
2. Create your own teaching videos with MySimpleShow
Creating your own teaching videos can certainly be a strenuous task. But the folks at MySimpleShow have a solution that makes it easy to create amazing videos for your students.
Free for educators, this innovative software creates animated explainer videos in the click of a few buttons. You type in the script. And the software pops out a ready-to-share video to play for your students. The ultimate engagement tool for introducing topics or summarizing a lesson.
To further boost student engagement, assign a project where students have to create their own video.
3. Listen to fun educational songs with Jam Campus
Educational songs are no longer only for young children.
Here at Jam Campus Education, we are helping shift the landscape of educational songs by providing upbeat pop and hip-hop songs for students of all ages. Our extensive song library contains biology songs, physics songs, chemistry songs, world history songs, and more.
Using animated music videos and catchy beats, Jam Campus music videos are perfect for introducing new topics or helping students remember important information.
To further boost student engagement, encourage students to create their own educational songs.
4. Have students create visual stories with StoryBird
Reading and writing are two of the most essential building blocks for developing the mind. And as teachers, we’re always looking for refreshing ways to help our students improve their reading and writing.
StoryBird is a dynamic language arts tool where students write and publish illustrative stories. Their library of captivating images helps spark creativity in students as they begin writing their own stories.
StoryBird also includes a social aspect so students can receive immediate feedback and follow along with other students around the world.
5. Spark some fresh ideas with BrainSparker
Looking for new writing ideas? If you or your students are struggling with writer’s block, BrainSparker has you covered.
The free app provides a lengthy supply of cards to help boost creativity. One card might simply be a picture of wooden logs. And another card might have an insightful question to ponder. All card prompts are carefully crafted to ignite
You can download the app to your own, or check out a few of their sample cards.
6. Show videos to your students with CrashCourse
Looking for the perfect YouTube video to show your class? CrashCourse videos are notorious for blending education and entertainment.
One of the most fun, upbeat, and truly interesting YouTube channels, they cover topics from sociology to computer science to world history and more. Every video host is unique and quirky allowing for an entertaining, yet information-packed experience. A wonderful collection of videos to play for your students when introducing a new topic or reinforcing important concepts.
7. Quiz your students with Kahoot!
Every student loves to play games!
Kahoot! is a game-based learning platform where teachers can create online multiple choice quizzes for students. The best part? Students answer the questions in real-time using their smartphones or computers.
Perfect for large groups, quiz questions are displayed on a shared screen and scoring points are distributed to students for correct answers. Used all around the world with students of all ages, children to adults.
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