Simplifying Teaching with Digital Content

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EducoSoft delivers digital content for K-12 students, teachers and self-learners. Dr Manmohan Sharma, Professor Emeritus, Clark Atlanta University (US) and President Educo International, speaks on the need of teachers’ empowerment through digital content that can help teachers make class discussions dynamic and interactive, in conversation with Pragya Gupta, ENN

Please share the genesis of Educo International.
Educo International was founded in 1985 to provide quality education tools, products and services globally. We have the vision to provide quality education solutions accessible anytime, anywhere with or without the availability of Internet access. Now we are delivering solutions through several options for the institution to chose from, including: 1) through Internet; 2) Internet based Lab licenses; 3) without Internet, through Local Area Network, and 4) now through a simple Pen Drive. If any of the first three options are used then it comes with comprehensive Learning Management System (LMS) with all the instructional management tools.
I have been in Education for over 50 years, about 30 years in US, and have held several senior academic and administrative positions in different universities in the USA and India. For the last three decades, I have been focusing on improving the quality of math and Science education by introducing technology solutions in teaching and learning.

How do you empower teachers?
We call ourselves to be academic solution provider. Our focus is on empowering teachers in the classroom as everything revolves around them. There is a scarcity of teachers, not even to talk of good teachers. Whatever we have can be made efficient enough to deliver quality education exploiting the power of digital content.
This is where efficiently delivered digital teaching resources can help improve the situation. We have tried to capture good pedagogy through dynamic graphics, appropriate animations, step-bystep presentations to make class room interactive using heuristics. Our Digital Teaching notes and assessment are seamlessly integrated for each and every concept of the curriculum that teachers are expected to follow.

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Do you favour smart classrooms that have entered Indian schools?
Yes, of course. That facilitates integration of teaching and learning through digital media. But its effective integration in actual teaching and learning is still to be seen. However, there are some institutions that can be considered as model for the smart room use and its complete integration in teaching and learning like the five schools in Delhi that I know; two schools of Tagore International group, two schools of Father Angeles, and Rukamni Devi Public school. Almost all teachers of these schools use smart class rooms very effectively.

How do you bring technology into the classroom?
Two things are necessary for the efficient use of technology by teachers in classrooms or for self professional development. It must be easy to use, and digital content must be very effective to make classrooms interactive. Access of digital content to teachers must be seamless, without depending on any downloads and external technology person’s help. Keeping all these consideration in mind, we are now offering our content in USB sticks that require no installations except the Pen drive itself. Powerful content, where teaching notes are presented with dynamic graphics and pedagogically sound animations, and are integrated with assessment for every concept, are likely to make class rooms interactive with good learning environment.

Please shed more light on your USB-based solution for learning.
Educo has launched a new concept of Pen Drive loaded with complete curriculum for teaching, learning, and assessment, all integrated and locked in this Pen Drive. Content is completely aligned with CBSC curriculum. Focus is on Mathematics, Sciences, and English Language Arts. For teachers, we are adding in one Pen Drive all that a teacher needs for the subject for all classes he/she teaches. For students, we are adding in one Pen Drive all the three subject matter; Math, Science, and English of his/ her class. It is being launched in four countries simultaneously: US, Jamaica, India, and Philippines.

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