Teaching methods evolve with time, and so do the tools available to educators. One such transformative method is ‘Teaching in the Power Zone,’ a concept highlighted in “The Fundamental Five Revisited.” Authored by four prominent educators, this book sets out five crucial fundamentals of exceptional instruction, of which the fifth – Working in the Power Zone – merits our attention today.
Understanding the Power Zone
Deemed the glue that binds and amplifies other fundamental practices, the Power Zone underscores the importance of a teacher’s physical proximity to students. Whether during instruction or monitoring, this closeness significantly influences the learning process. Ironically, as classrooms become technologically advanced, with interactive flat panels (IFPs) replete with an array of software, the instructor’s focus often shifts away from this pivotal zone, gravitating instead to the front, much like a sci-fi movie scene where Tom Cruise effortlessly navigates his virtual world. But remember, Mr. Cruise was not imparting knowledge to a room full of students.
The Significance of the Power Zone
Many studies support the idea that teachers being close to their students — in the Power Zone — leads to better classroom results. When teachers work in this zone, students tend to pay more attention, remember what they learn, have fewer behavior problems, and it even makes other teaching strategies work better. One important peer-reviewed study clearly showed that when teachers are near students, it helps the students engage more with the lesson and makes the whole class easier to manage.
However, when classrooms get filled with lots of new technology, it can have an unexpected side effect. This tech can make teachers feel like they should stay at their desks, surrounded by all these devices, almost like being at a command center. Doug Lemov, who wrote “Teach Like a Champion,” explains that this situation is like having an invisible line at the front of the classroom that teachers hesitate to step beyond, especially if there’s a big touchscreen there. It’s as though the tech is saying, “Stay here, don’t move around,” which isn’t what we’re aiming for.
ScreenBeam: Bridging the Gap
ScreenBeam stays at the front of the room for you, so you don’t have to be there. We can connect any device (Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android, and Chrome) to any screen, any projector, and even that IFP that keeps dropping your wireless connection. We give you our patented ghost-inking and wireless touchback on any Windows devices if you or a student still need to interact with the IFP without connecting any cables. More importantly, we allow you to teach from the Power Zone and break that plane while you’re using technology. If you don’t have a ScreenBeam, it’s easy to add one in and test it out. See why over 350,000 classrooms are using ScreenBeam technology, with thousands more joining every day. We set the standard and then raise it; others are just catching up. Contact us today.
Director, Edu Strategy at ScreenBeam
Helping education technology leaders rethink the modern classroom.
Tampa, Florida, United States