Image | Toolbox
The education of children and adolescents is one of the cornerstones of society. Tomorrow’s adults must be competent not only in linguistics and mathematics, but in all those disciplines qualifying them for the careers of the future. Thus, it is essential to establish educational systems that promote technology as a fundamental tool for young people’s development.
In schools the use of technology, in the form of mobile applications, is increasingly widespread. Confirming this trend is the warm response that Catalonian students and teachers have given the different initiatives of the pioneering mSchools educational programme, backed by MWCB in collaboration with the Regional Government of Catalonia, the City of Barcelona, and GSMA. As part of its on-going effort to introduce mobile technology into the classroom, in 2015 mSchools presents Toolbox, an online collection of teacher evaluated and classified educational apps approved for the Catalan Curriculum.
The main app stores for mobile devices currently offer thousands of education-related apps. But how does one know which ones are best suited to the educational activities being carried out in classrooms? Toolbox acts as filter, a directory of apps chosen, used and evaluated by Catalonian teachers. Toolbox, then, makes it easier for the educational community to introduce and evaluate these applications, based on its own experience and observing the methodology established by the Regional Government of Catalonia’s Department of Education.
As of May 20, teachers can access and register on the platform at toolbox.mobileworldcapital.com to evaluate contents. Toolbox already boasts more than 100 tested applications, and will continue to grow thanks to contributions from educators. Thus, this tool will soon become a leading resource in searches for apps aligned with the school curriculum.
Image | Toolbox
How does it work?
Applications for mobile devices are classified according to different criteria: type, education level and subject, among others. Each app has its own data sheet with a brief description, information on its characteristics – age, language, basic skills on which it focuses, type of resource, accessibility, privacy, advertising levels, etc. – and details regarding access to the application: download links, operating systems, etc.
The applications evaluated can also include sections for experiences in which teachers present how they have applied them in the classroom, specifying type of activity, tasks performed, projects on which the application or applications were used, time usage, and evaluation method.
Embraced by teachers
More than 50 teachers from all across Catalonia turned out for the official presentation of Toolbox on May 6, a training day on which the directors of the Learning and Knowledge Technologies (LKT) Area of the Regional Government of Catalonia’s Department of Education explained the methodology to evaluate and share applications with the whole group.
In short, Toolbox represents an ideal tool to allow teachers, students and parents to begin regularly using quality mobile educational content both in and outside the classroom.