The advancement of technology within teaching and learning has always been subject to conflicting opinions. Wherever, as an educator you sit on the ‘mobiles in the classroom’ debate, it borders on impossible to avoid the subject and deny its resourcefulness. Students, irrespective of age are turning to mobile technology to perform simple lesson assisted actions such as taking pictures of historic buildings and artwork on field trips or using language apps to learn new words without even realising they are doing it.

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Our students now have access to some of the fastest and most engaging technology the world has to offer and not only that, it fits into the palm of their hands. With change comes opportunity, and what we have here is the opportunity to access and utilise an incomprehensible amount of resources. Within seconds a student can begin a conversation with another student on the other side of the world, they can virtually visit landmarks and countries that otherwise they may never see. Do you think as educators we should be evangelising the authentic advantages to mobile assisted learning?

 

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Like with anything new, there are obvious positives and then subjects up for discussion. We shouldn’t however be put off by debate and the challenges surrounding change, as subjects such as cyber bullying, online safety, effective use of time and independent learning as well as theft and affordability are all areas that should be discussed openly with students.

One particular concern many educators and parents have had with BYOD (bring your own device) methods of utilising technology, falls around affordability to students and their families. It is true that not all students will own high end devices, but still a smart phone is a pretty smart piece of technology, regardless of the grading it’s been given. Teachers will quickly be able to grasp what can be done with even the most basic of smart mobile technologies and that combined with online services such as SkyDrive, students will have access to GB’s of storage via the cloud.

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Microsoft offer a wide range of smartphones and the Nokia Lumia 520 is an offering to certainly challenge claims that less expensive smartphones aren’t in the same league as some of the premium models. Powered by Windows Phone 8, this phone has the same appearance of others in the range with familiar apps and Office productivity functionality.

 

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The Lumia certainly stands out from the crowd with its brightly coloured changeable shells giving a refresh option. It also has a generous 4 inch sensitive screen, so sensitive in fact it works perfectly (Those of you who have tried to access your emails whilst waiting in the cold will know what I’m talking about.) Coming with a range of great features only found on a Nokia phone, the 520 includes built-in digital camera lenses like Cinemagraph, Smart Shoot and Panorama, as well as other great apps like HERE Maps, free voice-guided navigation and free streaming music through Nokia Mix Radio.

This phone has loads of great assets, and if you find yourself in a phone store I encourage you to check it out for yourself, and with prices starting at £99.00 or on a £10.00 monthly plan, its modest price tag is also very welcomed.

To see the full range head to the Windows Phone Website.