Boxlight recently welcomed Aleasha Stevens to the company where she will serve as Education Consultant and lead the development and delivery of the company’s virtual learning center. In this role, she will use best practices to facilitate demonstrations on Boxlight education technology solutions including interactive displays, MimioStudio lesson creation and presentation software, and the MimioConnect blended learning platform. Stevens is driven by a passion to advocate for the needs of all learners, particularly those who have not been empowered to do so for themselves. This has led her to dedicate her life to advocating for the needs of children as a classroom teacher, literacy program director, VP of Education Services, and an education technology consultant.
Stevens spoke with Larry Jacobs from Equity and Access (ace-ed.org) about how teachers are feeling about using education technology and what is needed to build their confidence. As a former classroom teacher, she recalls the trepidation many of her colleagues felt about incorporating technology in their classrooms. But she understood what technology could do for her students, saying, “(Technology) made the learning engaging. It also kept me relevant for my students.”
As the first to use an interactive whiteboard in her classroom, she remembers the reactions of her students and colleagues – “It let the students know that I was willing to take a risk. I didn’t know what I was doing…but I was willing to take a risk. It also empowered my peers because they thought, ‘Well, if she’s willing to do it, then I can do it, too.’”
Stevens also realized that having her students take on the roles of ‘tech experts’ helped them to take responsibility for their learning. She recalls, “The students were the experts on the technology and so if I just allowed them to do what they were more skilled at doing, it empowered them.”
She believes should feel just as empowered as students to learn and apply newly learned technology skills. Advocating for Boxlight professional development courses, she explains that the content “definitely leans in that direction of making sure we’re empowering the educator to be able to use the technology for the sake of efficiency, for engaging learners, for staying relevant in this COVID age.”
When Jacobs asked about what more Boxlight is doing for educators, Stevens eagerly shared about their new Virtual Learning Center and what the team is doing to ensure it is relevant to educators so that it “looks like the future classroom.” She states, “We’ve always said, ‘What does the classroom of tomorrow look like?’ Well, tomorrow is today. We’re here.”
Technology solutions that visitors to the virtual learning center will experience include:
- Interactive flat panels for visual clarity and engagement in the classroom and on camera
- MimioConnect, a web-based interactive content development platform accessible from home as well as the classroom
- Assessment capabilities of each solution to help educators identify and bridge gaps in learning especially in light of the “COVID slide”
- Fully integrated STEM solutions that have remote learning capabilities and support interdisciplinary learning
To listen to the full podcast with Aleasha Stevens, click Optimizing the Ed Tech Ecosystem.