Gone are the days of the old blackboards

COMPUTER LAB: Each class in the school attends at least one class in the computer lab every week.

BRACKENHURST Primary has completely integrated technology into the school through the use of technology to select, design, deliver, administer, facilitate and support learning.

On September 27, the RECORD visited Brackenhurst Primary School to witness its e-learning solutions.

The term “e-learning” covers a wide set of applications and processes, including computer-based learning, web-based learning and mobile learning.

It is currently the only school in Gauteng to have achieved this.

The school has many classes, including music, science, Zulu and the like, and each learner works from a tablet instead of textbooks or notebooks.

WORKING: Learners have fun as they proceed with learning and working off tablets.

As for the teachers, instead of writing on a chalkboard or whiteboard, they write with a digital pen that is connected to a digital board. Teachers also work from tablets.

For learners who cannot afford tablets, 80 tablets which are owned by the school which can be shared among them.

Databases such as Moodle (a database also used by tertiary academic institutions) and games such as Minecraft and physics-based games are used on a regular basis.

Besides the fact that learners are having more fun internalising information, they are also learning much more effectively.

DIGITAL BOARD: A student writes an answer on the digital board with a digital marker in the Zulu class.

According to the National School of Government, e-learning offers many benefits:

  • Training needs can be identified and recorded through online questionnaires and/or surveys.
  • Learners, especially at remote sites, have anytime-anywhere access to learning opportunities.
  • Learners have access to standardised learning opportunities.
  • Work tasks and announcements can be rolled out quickly to a large number of participants.
  • Regular assessment with immediate feedback is possible by means of machine-marked assessment opportunities.
  • Online collaboration can facilitate the sharing of information, resources and knowledge for sustainable development, irrespective of time and space.
  • Participation in learning can easily be checked and learner’s progress can be monitored.
  • Tracking and reporting mechanisms provide feedback, which can be used to continuously improve learning interventions.

EDUCATIONAL APPS: A learner learns about science and physics with this build-a-bridge game application.

“E-learning is the future of schools,” said Beverley Barkhuizen, a Brackenhurst Primary teacher. “It’s the best solution for the environment and it’s a big attraction for our school now. We are very proud of it. We look forward to seeing how everything changes for the better.”

To watch a video of Brackenhurst Primary’s e-learning integration, simply follow this link: 

The future of schools is very interesting!

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Monique van Wyk

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