Blog Articles

Back to School 2022: EdTech Tools to Enhance the Classroom

Ginelle Testa
Teaching Materials

Back to School 2022: EdTech Tools to Enhance the Classroom

As educators, your plates aren’t just full; they’re overflowing. Finding additional resources is something you just don’t have time to do. Edtech is rising to the occasion to help you out inside and outside the classroom. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of some of the most helpful edtech tools. We hope you find them useful! 

Polling tools

Polling tools have many benefits, such as reducing the shyness/embarrassment of students, encouraging participation, and gauging students’ learning. It can make learning more interactive!

Slido

Are you looking for an easy-to-use polling platform for in-person, remote, or hybrid classes? Slido has you covered! It’s a great way to engage students with live polls, quizzes, and interactive Q&As and a perfect way to check student understanding in real-time. Instructors can set up Slido in less than a minute, and participants only need a simple code or link for access. There’s an extensive free plan or a basic plus plan that’s $12 a month.

Crowd Signal

Previously known as Polldaddy, Crowd Signal is a website that allows you to create, distribute, and interpret the results of your polls, quizzes, surveys, and ratings. It’s a simple tool that lets you drag and drop to create your chosen method. You can customize the look and feel or select from an existing theme. One of the cool perks of this tool is that you can easily export your results to Google Sheets and Excel. There are free options, or you can purchase it for $15 a month. 

Video learning tools

Video is timely in 2022, as seen by its presence on every social media and news platform. As a result of teens' and young adults' engagement with videos, teachers are harnessing their power as edtech tools! 

TikTok

TikTok allows students and teachers to make short videos to explain a concept, share a story, or create a final project. The videos are bite-sized at an average of three-15 seconds or potentially up to 60 seconds. It’s a creative way to engage students in a topic, and it’s free - anyone can make an account! All your students are on TikTok already scrolling their FYP (for you page). Why not utilize the app in class?

Flip

Flip is a video discussion app made by Microsoft. Students can use it to connect in safe, small groups to share videos, build community, and learn together. Students can have video discussions with each other or with educators. It’s a simple and fun tool where educators can post “topics,” and students can respond. Flip even integrates with Google Classroom, so instructors can easily upload their roster to get started with a group. It’s free.

Labster

In addition to simulations, Labster offers short videos! Searching the web for a video that matches your lesson plan can be frustrating and time-consuming. That's why Labster created brief 3D videos that help students visualize science and focus on key concepts. Check out a sample video on YouTube: “Antigen-Antibody Binding - Why are some blood types incompatible?

Collaborative whiteboard tools

Collaborative whiteboards go beyond expo markers and traditional whiteboards. They’re a shared space that allows for tons of collaboration through brainstorming and exchanging ideas. They offer real-time cooperation that email and discussion boards can miss. 

Stormboard

Stormboard is a highly collaborative whiteboard where educators and students can use sticky notes to sketch ideas. There are over 250 templates, and teachers can add text, files, images, and videos! It’s an excellent way to split work between a group. Results can be exported into Excel spreadsheets if needed. The premium version for more than five users is $10 a month.

Miro 

Miro uses digital sticky notes and is a helpful tool for multiple people collecting research in one place and brainstorming. It’s suggested during group projects because students can view, update, and communicate ideas in real-time. There are also a variety of templates available to fit your unique needs. A free version is available where you’re allowed three boards and the premium version is $8 a month. 

Career readiness tools

Although your main goal is to educate students, another goal is to guide them towards a career they’re passionate about. There are tools to help you and them with this process.

spikeview

Students are doing work in class that they could compile into a portfolio whether they know it or not. Help them get ahead of the curve and prepare for their future careers by using spikeview to track their learning journey, talents, interests, and accomplishments with an organized portfolio. It’s an excellent way for students to keep their future jobs top of mind. There are even visualization tools that can help students tell their stories and make decisions. Spikeview is free!

Upkey

Upkey offers students a free online career readiness tool! It can help students create and improve their resumes and get matched for jobs they find online. There’s also a library of answers, tips, and advice about career building and education! The cool thing is that both high schoolers and college students use the platform to amplify their career goals. 

Stress reduction tools

To say that educators experience stress is an understatement. You all have a big load to carry. Use these apps to release tension and gain mindfulness to contribute to health and happiness.

Calm 

Calm is a great meditation and sleep app with lots of content specific to teachers, ranging from “30 Days of Mindfulness in the Classroom” to a “Self Care Guide for Teachers.” There are daily meditations that are short, long, or in between, whatever your preference is. The app is free to download and offers 40% off a year of Calm Premium for teachers, ringing it in at about $42 a year.

Headspace

Headspace is another meditation and sleep app that offers tools and resources to do sitting meditation as well as be mindful in everyday life. They offer inspiration, guidance, and support to live a mindful life in pursuit of improving the health and happiness of the world. Research has shown that only ten days of Headspace reduced stress by 14%! Amazingly, they offer free access to K-12 teachers. 

Just for fun tools

Goosechase

Goosechase is an online platform inspired by scavenger hunts that helps you create interactive experiences for students. It’s a fun way for students to comprehend and reinforce topics. Educators can add missions, invite students, and watch them post pictures for the tasks, tracking the stats and engagement in real-time. There’s an extensive free version.

Kahoot

Kahoot is a game-based learning platform where they call their games “kahoots.” Educators can create games or use existing games! Students can play challenges in real-time or asynchronously at their own pace. Kahoot Pro is only $3 monthly per teacher!

Science education tool

Labster

Labster virtual lab simulations are immersive 3D interactive learning environments. Labster's virtual lab simulations allow students to work through real-life case stories, interact with lab equipment, perform experiments and learn with theory and quiz questions. We’re admittedly biased, but we feature over 290 simulations across various science disciplines such as biology, chemistry, earth science, physics, and many more. Our free trial allows you a 30-day all-access educator’s pass to teach with! The prices vary based on the school or university, and it’s easy to access pricing via chat on the Labster website.

Final Thoughts

If you’re an educator who has had positive experiences with other teacher-friendly tools for STEM classrooms, please let us and your fellow teachers know about them on our Community Campus. It’s is a free resource for all science educators - no Labster subscription required!  

Bonus Reads: Want more helpful EdTech tools? Check out our lists from the last two years:

2021: https://www.labster.com/blog/back-to-school-tech-tools/ 

2020: https://www.labster.com/blog/back-to-school-2020-tech-tools/