This weeks MIEE TV blog is all about Office 365 in the classroom. Say 'Office 365' to a lot of people, and they immediately just think 'Word, Excel and PowerPoint'. Well, while these commonly used applications (and so many more) are indeed found within the Office suite, Office 365 is much more about the working environment and the interconnectivity it enables between these applications, allowing the students and teachers who use it the freedom and ability to collaborate whenever and wherever they are.
Office 365 is available within education to all staff and students at no cost. Check your eligibility at Office.com/getoffice365
To illustrate this, we can look to a recently published article in the Summer edition of the PTA Magazine, in which Tom Rees – headteacher of Simon de Senlis Primary (a Microsoft Showcase School) – talks about how using Office 365 has removed the barriers he encountered with other online learning environments in schools over the last 10 years.
"The way Office 365 can be used across many devices – phones, tablets and laptops for example – is key. There's no barrier to collaboration, as there would have been with the use of different operating systems."
He also spoke of how Office 365 enables them to make use of technology has also had a positive effect in the way that the teachers can now use their time:
"We've now got tools which are no more complicated than the hundreds of tools people use in their everyday lives. It's a tool for teachers, who can focus on the learning, teaching, questioning and feedback which we know makes a difference."
The whole article can be found on our SlideShare account:
Another example of our Showcase Schools embracing Office 365 in the classroom and using it as the basis for their teaching and learning comes from Sandymoor School in Runcorn, where two of the teachers are MIEEs. Here are just some of the ways Office 365 has been embraced at Sandymoor:
All students have a virtual homework diary that is linked to their calendar.
It provides a staff intranet
Online form completion such as leave of absence forms
Improved staff-student communication
Currently working on developing behaviour reporting for the students to eradicate bullying
At a Civica event earlier this year, headteacher Andrew Howard spoke of how his school has embraced Office 365 and talked through their innovative use of it to excite, engage and teach their students. You can view his talk below:
If you’ve missed any of the previous blogs in the MIEE TV series, you can find them here:
Introducing MIEE TV – bringing you weekly tips and best practices from Expert Educators
MIEE TV - Mark Martin: Freedom to roam
MIEE TV – Expert Educators using OneNote in the classroom
MIEE TV – Expert Educators using Sway in the Classroom
MIEE TV – Expert Educators using Office Mix in the Classroom
MIEE TV – Expert Educators using Skype in the Classroom
MIEE TV – Expert Educators using Inking in the Classroom
MIEE TV – Expert Educators using Minecraft in the Classroom
MIEE TV - Global Enterprise Challenge in the Classroom