At a secondary school in Vienna, Polaschek gets an idea of ​​digital teaching

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Since the start of last school year, about 270,000 low-cost end devices have been distributed as part of the Department of Education’s device initiative. In the first year, all enrolled students of the first and second grades of AHS/high school or their teachers received laptops and tablets, from the second year those of the first grades. Education Minister Martin Polaschek (ÖVP) got an idea of ​​using the devices at a secondary school in Vienna-Ottakring on Wednesday.

Participation in the device initiative is voluntary, but overall, 98 percent of eligible schools are now involved. The prerequisite for this is the consent of the school partners and a concept for the use of the devices in the classroom. Schools can also participate with individual classes. Parents have to pay a deductible of 25 percent for the devices – depending on the model, this is about 100 euros. An exemption is also possible for certain groups. The laptops and tablets become the property of the students.

Uniform devices must be used at each participating school – you can choose which devices come from a list (currently Android tablets, Chromebooks, iPads, Windows notebooks and refurbished used notebooks). Recently there were problems with the delivery of Windows tablets, but these have now largely been resolved. Delivery of this year’s devices should be completed by early December.

The school visited has been using iPads for some time
The school selected for the minister’s visit was not typical: the deputy head of the Kopp 2 secondary school, Ingo Stein, has been using iPads in his lessons for some time. The teacher of mathematics, physics/chemistry and digital basic education attaches great importance to the use of squares and compasses and that digital devices are put aside. In English lessons, on the other hand, the vocabulary is still written by hand – this way it is easier to remember. In general, after about two hours of use, care is taken to allow an hour or two without using the device.

At the same time, Stein described the benefits of the iPads – for example, they enabled individual involvement with the students. With the push of a button you can see, for example, who has solved the given problems correctly and who is still struggling. Of course, the iPads can also be a distraction for the students, he said – but there’s an app for that, which lets the teacher see which app the students are currently using. To gain attention and assign new tasks, the devices can be briefly locked by the teacher at the touch of a button. Also possible: For example, the teacher can only release the calculator app during math homework.

Polaschek himself said that it has proven useful for all students in a school to have the same devices. It is also important that they become their property – so that otherwise the children and young people would take care of them and always have them with them. They don’t just have to be used for learning. From the vision of the ministry, the main thing that should be ensured in the future is that more apps become available for education in the individual subjects.

Source: Krone

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