This article was first published on the Microsoft News Centre and is re-published with permission.
As technology skills become a critical part of most occupations, schools across New Zealand are actively adopting digital tools to keep their students ahead of the curve. For a number of students at both Epsom Girls Grammar School and St. Mary’s College in Auckland, Microsoft Teams is making collaboration fun and easy.
The Challenges of Digital Transformation
Imagine working all night on a homework assignment, uploading your efforts onto the shared digital school notebook, only to find them missing the next day. Or suppose you need to quickly review some class notes taken months ago, only to get stalled sifting through your file system, endlessly looking for the exact date when they were taken.
If you’re a teacher, you probably know the frustration of trying to collect work via email; the stress of scanning and uploading countless physical documents; or the bewilderment of managing students and coursework across multiple digital platforms. If any of these scenarios sound familiar, you’re not alone.
As one of the oldest existing schools in New Zealand, St. Mary’s College is moving rapidly into the future. They’ve been using digital tools since 2004, but it’s only recently that they’ve began a major philosophical shift in their pedagogy. This change has meant the implementation of a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) program for students and a move to Office 365 and its suite of online collaboration tools. Of these, Microsoft Teams has stood out as a key application for learning and development.
According to the Head of Science at St. Mary’s College, when Teams was introduced the overall response was very enthusiastic. The platform has helped both students and teachers adapt to online learning much faster. Students love the conversation tab features because they are fun and familiar and teachers like the assignments feature because they can set a hard deadline that the computer can enforce.