5 Tech-Centric Ways to Create Calmer Learning Environments

5 Tech-Centric Ways to Create Calmer Learning Environments

As classroom technology continues to evolve, educators and school mental health professionals can use these strategies to help students navigate their digital world with purpose, according to eSchool News.

Here is how technology can relieve brain overload:

1)Mental health check-ins to start class

Well-being check-ins at the beginning of class can be a way to help students regain focus and center their thoughts. Simple online tools that let you survey your class – like Pear Deck, Google Forms, or Kahoot – can be used to support these emotional checks. Asking questions along the lines of “How are you feeling today?” or “What color would best describe your mood today and why?” and allowing students to respond anonymously can be a game changer in the classroom.

2) Mindfulness apps

Helping students practice mindfulness, or the ability to be present in the moment and aware of thoughts, feelings, and sensations, can greatly benefit mental health far beyond the classroom. In addition to non-tech strategies like paper mood boards and breathing exercises, there are free digital tools and apps like Calm, Headspace, and more that can guide students through mindfulness exercises in both a group or individual setting.

3) Private digital feedback

Some students are not comfortable raising their hands in class or asking for feedback in a group setting. Leveraging tech solutions that have chat features or allow for real-time digital feedback on student work is a way to engage students who prefer more private communication.

There are also certain classroom discussions where anonymity is key. If there is a conversation of a sensitive nature, where not even the teacher needs to know whose answer is whose, anonymous feedback will help educators facilitate an honest, open discourse. This way, students will feel more comfortable sharing their responses knowing that they are anonymous. Try utilizing digital tools that support this kind of safe engagement.

4) Audio & visual tools

Classroom environments can directly impact students’ ability to learn. Adding calming music, videos, or lighting can help put students at ease and create a more peaceful learning space. There are endless playlists with classroom-appropriate songs available through services like Spotify or YouTube. Projecting videos of a fireplace, waves on a beach, or slow-moving clouds to the front of the classroom during work time can also help create a more relaxing atmosphere.

5) Digital guardrails

When students are using their school-issued devices, it can be helpful to set guardrails or parameters around which web pages they can or cannot access during class. Certain filtering solutions or classroom management products can help narrow or broaden internet access depending on what is needed for the day’s lesson. Help students focus on the task at hand and reduce information overload or distractions.

For students who often find themselves overloaded, a calming learning environment can serve as a much-needed moment of stillness. As classroom technology continues to evolve, educators and school mental health professionals can use strategies like these five to help students navigate their digital world with purpose.

eSchool News

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