As a governor and tech savvy parent of four, Dani Schuchman has begun helping his local school to improve technology in education. Working in an environment which is so exposed to great technology and resources, Dani believes it is vital that he gave back to the community, as he could see how these tools could enhance learning.
When Dani first started working with his children's school, The Independent Jewish Day School, a technology refresh was needed for some out of date classroom and administrative equipment. The school was interested in choosing technology that put them ahead of the curve, whilst being cost effective. By choosing Microsoft enabled products, the school were able to tap into so many more resources than if they had chosen a competitor. With Microsoft's wide range of developer networks and partnerships The Independent Jewish Day School could use the same software on the various form factors in the school – teacher’s laptops, classroom computers, interactive touchscreens and potentially tablets in the future. "The possibilities were endless!"
As a governor, Dani believes it is a school’s duty to provide the best learning environment for students, utilising technology in the best way possible and in-line with Department for Education guidelines. Microsoft technology enables Dani's school to achieve this objective. The DfE has recently introduced new Computer Science guidelines within the curriculum. Along with enabling schools to comply with these guidelines, Microsoft technology allows pupils to gain true value from lessons which will support them in their futures. Skills such as touch typing, e-mail, safer ways to use the internet and coding, equips students for life. Using the “Switched on Computing” resources in conjunction with Microsoft, will help teachers implement the change in curriculum whilst creating enriching lesson plans.
The head teacher at Dani's school believes that "Microsoft enables us to accommodate for different styles of learning in the classroom and ensuring that pupils make good progress".
Dani argues that technology can't replace the important staples within education, such as reading, writing and arithmetic. However, it is only technology that can remove the boundaries within the classroom. For example, Skype has the potential to allow students to communicate with environments and people all around the world. Guest speakers and classrooms which would have never interacted can now engage, enabling student’s learning to be utilised. Dani strongly believes technology is a brilliant tool which can enhance a student's learning. A wide range of resources are now available to teachers and students at one click. No longer do lessons rely solely on materials that are in the classroom. With technology, a synchronised use of recourses from videos to blogs can be created. The learning environment is enhanced, equipping them for the future, whilst enriching their learning within the classroom, in a fun and innovative manner.
Dani believes Microsoft is at the forefront of improving education for primary years all the way through University years. Through Microsoft's full reach of their partner and developer network there is so much that can be done.