- By: Tetiana Hanchar Tetiana Hanchar
- Date: Jan 16, 2018
Old school conventional wisdom, due to which a lesson should last 45 minutes and “please turn off your phones,” are long past. Today, future-oriented educators look at new methods of driving academic success. Project awards promoting educational innovation offer a great way to hone the learning curve and prepare students for the tech-driven economy.
The importance of promoting educational innovation at schools
In every walk of life, innovation has become a buzzword. Keeping learners abreast of innovation at schools is crucial because it leads to improvements in each sphere of their lives. Here’s why successful educators can’t cross innovation off their teaching plans:
- Innovation gives birth to tech literacy. Digital technology is key to solving the most complicated problems of economy, politics, information technology, and more. By promoting tech literacy at schools, educators teach how to accelerate problem-solving with the help of digital tools.
- Innovation promotes teamwork. The good reasons for setting up student project awards are to encourage collaborative work and demonstrate how joint effort can generate innovation.
- Innovation helps raise independent learners. Due to the Innovation Unit report, the most innovative classroom is the one where teachers can be students, and students are encouraged to be teachers. By adopting innovative teaching tactics, educators promote independent and creative thinking which is a great benefit for any 21st-century employee.
The ways to promote educational innovation through project awards at schools
Depending on your goals and teaching formats, you can organize project award campaigns around versatile ideas. Check out several progressive ways to accelerate education through project awards:
Team-centered project awards
This type of educational project organization instrument focuses on collaboration and teamwork. Contemporary workplaces encourage work in teams which is a proven way to increase organizational and executive efficiency, benefit from expertise exchange, and attain results faster. To maintain a collaborative work spirit at school, educators can leverage the following approaches: cross-curricular contests involving learners with different levels of preparation or project competitions for teams from multiple schools.
Research-centric project awards
One more valuable skill for the workplace is the ability to execute research across subject boundaries. The development of research-centered projects by students is a great tool for teaching young people to manage their time, test several solutions, and acquire knowledge in diverse fields.
Solution-centric project awards
Kid hackathons, mission trips, and scenario-development projects are great event formats that help learners embrace a result-oriented focus on work. As an option, to match the feel of contemporary tech-driven markets, educators can be inspired by startup coding events and set up mini solution-centered hackathons for kids.
The top-notch educational innovation ideas for schools
To engage young learners and promote productive work in an innovative classroom, an educator has to step away from the conventional practices of a traditional school curriculum. Here are some cutting-edge ideas that you can utilize to set up a project awards event at school:
Touching the real world. While the goal of organizing school project awards is preparing students for the modern market, going into authentic settings is the best idea for the acceleration of educational progress.
- Piscataway’s Project Healthlinks. Focused on building medical expertise, the award-winning school projects from Piscataway are set to introduce learners to the real problems that they as healthcare professionals have to tackle in future. In small groups, students are taken on field trips exploring medical transplant services, and working on innovative solutions alongside the experts.
- Pier 14 SF Project. To encourage educators to promote participation in real-life projects at schools, the San Francisco Institute has developed a great initiative for learners interested in architecture and design. Groups of students were encouraged to participate in a half-day program of designing tiles for Pier 14, the new San Francisco Port.
Building practical tech expertise. The aspect traditional education often lacks is the creation of programs that encourage the development of tech expertise. School project awards with a focus on organizational, tech-driven challenges help educators address this problem.
- Lego Robots Competition. This kid contest, which is organized in diverse forms and flavors annually, is based on LEGO robotics. Depending on age, preferences, and educational objectives, educators can pick a desired project format like LEGO League, RoboCup, or Robot Olympiad. The advantage of such projects is that they promote tech literacy by “talking to kids in their own language” while LEGO is a beloved entertainment brand for many young learners around the world.
Working tips for organizing successful student project contests
To maximize the impact of your projects and gain maximum attention from the young learners, we’ve collected some smart tips for educators:
- Allow as much independence as possible. Keeping an eye on the actions of your students is a must, but the more independence you allow in your classroom, the more dedicated to the project your young learners will be. Establish clear directions and let them tackle the challenge at their own pace.
- Make technology into a priority. To capitalize on tech literacy in your classroom, give preference to technology-based project awards. From bot development to 3D printing, there are many techniques that can benefit the skills of students in this technology-centered world.
- Automate the process of project awards development. To be an innovation-oriented educator, you also are a busy person. Reduce the stress and cost of project awards organization by using automated solutions for contest judging, submissions, and reporting. Bonus! Using digital tools to set up school projects is one more excellent way to promote tech literacy.
By amping up the learning curve at schools, modern educators can keep pace with the quickly developing workplace. Set up project awards at schools to maximize collaboration, acquaint young learners with technology use, and accelerate research-based teamwork.
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