In the past year, teachers have brought technology to life in hybrid and distance learning. To continue to support educators and students in creating an inclusive learning environment and raising the standard of education, Microsoft is introducing new features in Microsoft Teams that respond to the needs of educators, educators, and students.
According to a recent study on the YouGov teacher site, commissioned by Microsoft, 83% of teachers feel that learning is not limited to a specific time and place, 71% of teachers feel that technology has helped them empower them in ways that improve teaching and abilities and 82% of teachers believe that the last year has It has accelerated the pace of technology pushing innovation in teaching and learning.
According to Sandra Martinho, Director of Education and Philanthropy in Microsoft Portugal, “Over the past year, teachers have explored technology in an innovative way to keep students engaged and promote active learning. Technology is critical to providing students, in the context of the classroom, with an overall development of different experiences that must integrate teaching. Hybrid, either in person or remotely. At Microsoft, we will continue to support the education community on a daily basis, seeking to integrate teaching and learning in a rapidly evolving global world and to enrich the teaching experience. “
New features in Microsoft Teams to engage students in the classroom New features in Teams have been developed based on feedback gathered from education experts, teachers, and students and will be available for free before the following school year:
• Group tasks: Teachers will be able to organize students into groups so that they can work together in creating and collaborating on a task, allowing them to experience group work.
Use your favorite assignment apps: Educators know there are apps that can engage and inspire students in deeper learning. Consequently, they will now be able to assign tasks from a variety of external applications directly in Microsoft Teams, which saves time and increases students’ creativity.
Calendar integrations: New calendar integrations allow students to know when they have classes and should complete tasks in Microsoft Teams and their Outlook calendars. This way, students can see all the important information – where they need to be and what they must do to continue learning – in one place.
Learning Management System Updates: To help save teacher time and create an ongoing experience, Microsoft is working with major LMS providers, such as Instructure and Blackboard, to deepen and improve integrations with Microsoft Teams and OneDrive. Additionally, it collaborates with partners to bring its unique resources to Teams.
Emotional well-being is the key to student success and the YouGov study shows educators that there is high demand for curricula in this direction, but low in supply. In the study, we concluded that 81% of teachers consider it extremely important to confirm how students feel regularly. Technology can play an important role in helping teachers better communicate with and understand their students, as well as facilitate the development of their social and emotional skills. These two new features are designed exactly in this direction:
Reflect, a free app from Microsoft Teams, provides a way for teachers to make regular check-ins with students or classes, helping teachers better define each student’s needs.
Features included in OneNote and Teams, such as supplemental badges and sticker packs, can help students and educators feel more connected and foster the growth of effective relationships.
To support student safety in digital and physical spaces, we introduced moderated chat in Teams. This feature will be available at the end of May, and will allow designated teachers to initiate chats with students, preventing them from starting new conversations, unless the right tutor is present. Thus students will be able to participate in safe and adequately monitored discussions by school personnel.
Make Learning More Engaging and Fun: Incorporating Minecraft into Teams Educators know that immersive experiences deepen learning and are always looking for different ways to keep students actively engaged. Resources with fun components increase students’ understanding of the topics. In this way, Microsoft made it possible to integrate Minecraft Education Edition into Teams.
Reading Progress is also a new resource, freely available on Microsoft Teams for Education, designed to personalize learning and increase student success, whether they are learning a new language or teachers are trying to improve student reading. Reading progress allows students to practice their skills in a safe, student-centered environment, and at this initial stage it will be available in English.
For more information, see the Microsoft Education page.