That students are heavy users of social media and technology is no secret. There is an increasing diversity of platforms and devices that serve different purposes, and our environment is becoming increasingly digitized. However, we can take advantage of it for teaching. Therefore, in this post we are going to provide some ideas on how to use technology and social networks to increase motivation in class.
According to a study conducted in 2017, the use of technological tools increases students’ motivation, as well as their participation and innovativeness. So, take note of the ideas we offer you below, as they will be useful for you to get into your students’ digital world.
Advantages and disadvantages of the use of social networks in young people
Before starting with the ideas to take advantage of social networks to increase motivation in class, let’s review the pros and cons of using them:
|1. Help to stay connected with friends and family.|
2. Online communities of shared interests can be built.
3. Keep updated with what is going on in the world.
4. An amazing tool for sharing knowledge and skills with others.
5. A way to get involved in social causes and cause a positive impact on society.
|1. Excessive use can lead to addiction and can negatively affect productivity and focus.|
2. Source of distraction, pushing away responsibilities and important commitments.
3. Source of rumors and fake news and difficulty in cross-checking information.
4. With uncontrolled use, young people can be exposed to dangerous or inappropriate content.
5. Uncontrolled and unregulated use can be a source of cyberbullying.
Do your students keep talking about BeReal? Imitate their dynamics to increase their interest and motivation for your subject.
What is BeReal?
BeReal is undoubtedly the social network of 2022, and surely of 2023 as well. It is a social network that seeks to move away from the posturing of other social networks, encouraging you to be real and to show yourself. Every day, at any time of the day (which cannot be known in advance) a notification is triggered and users must post a photo of what they are doing at that moment, they only have 2 minutes to publish it.
Although it is allowed to post photos later, the key to the application is that all users are real and do not try to make up the reality they are living at the time of notification.
As it can be seen in the Google Trends graph, since mid-2022 there has been a boom in this social network, which only seems to be on the rise. Therefore, you can take advantage of BeReal’s dynamics to increase motivation in class.
Mimic the BeReal dynamic in class
A way to keep your students motivated with your subject is to prepare a quizz with a single
question and you’re sending it at a random time during the day. It should be a review question on something that has already been seen in class. When students get the email that the question has been released, they can answer the quizz.
These little challenges are a fun way to keep them focused and increase their interest and motivation in class. In addition, it is something that connects with your students, as it resembles the functioning of BeReal, which as we have seen, is the trendy social network of the year. You can give a small reward to those who answer correctly, such as a positive point, a rounding of the final grade, etc.
Use Instagram as a project presentation format
Despite the growth of social networks such as BeReal and TikTok, Instagram is still one of the most used social networks, especially among young people. Therefore, it is a good way to increase students’ motivation in class.
One way to do this is to do a class project in which the presentation format is an Instagram profile, with all the necessary elements. That is, your students will have to think about the profile picture and biography, as well as the username. In addition, they will have to take care of the content they publish, the visual part, the proper text according to the images, the publication formats, the hashtags, etc.
So, you can set them a theme to explore, explaining what they should do, and give them some time so that they can work correctly on the Instagram profile. When presenting it, you can opt for co-evaluation, so that students can evaluate each other.
Boost motivation in class and out of class: Instagram for field trips
Often, excursions with a didactic purpose are moments when students disconnect from the subject and many times they don’t pay attention. However, we have ways to try to capture their attention, and one of them is to make use of social networks to motivate them.
If you have a school outing planned for any subject, in which knowledge must be acquired during its course, you can open an Instagram profile. All students should have access to this profile, as it will be their collaborative work tool during the field trip.
Prior to the field trip, you should share the profile login credentials with them and explain what they are expected to do. For example, for Geography, students could upload photos of vegetation, indicating the name and characteristics of each plant or tree. In this way, they will put into practice what they have learned in class. Students will work collaboratively, enriching the profile together.
After the field trip, the profile can be used to review in class all the information gathered, make joint corrections and use the profile as study material for an exam.
Art as they’ve never seen it before: using virtual reality and augmented reality
The use of virtual reality and augmented reality is becoming increasingly common in many fields, art being one of them. If your students struggle with art, it may be a good idea to give a try to virtual reality and augmented reality tools that bring art closer to the entire population. It’s a fun way to use technology in the classroom, and sure this will increase your students’ interest.
Google launched a while ago an application called Google Arts & Culture, with which you can perform various activities that your students will surely enjoy a lot. Among them, the ones we highlight are the following:
- Explore museums and galleries around the world using virtual reality and 360º videos. Your students can discover curiosities about the most famous (and not so famous) works of art, as if they were really inside a museum.
- Art filter: your students will be able to see themselves as famous works of art thanks to this filter. You can encourage your students to use the filter and investigate more about the artwork they are interested in. It’s a fun way to get them to experiment, play and learn about art.
- Art camera: this is another functionality, where students will be able to see the works they want as if they were displayed on the classroom wall. It can be an original way to talk about an important piece in the history of art.
In the following images and videos you can see how we have played from Additio with the possibilities of this application 😉
Are you going to turn technology and social media into your allies in the classroom?
We have seen many ways to use technology in the classroom to motivate your students, which we hope will inspire you to think of activities for your classes. If you do, let us know, sure it will be fun!
See you soon!