The concept of divisible classrooms has gained significant popularity in educational institutions of all kinds. Schools aim to optimize their limited space by flexibly merging or dividing classrooms based on the number of students. This approach enables schools to operate more economically by utilizing existing space effectively without incurring additional costs for larger spaces. In this article, we will explore the equipment required for setting up a divisible classroom, with a focus on achieving a truly smart divisible classroom that offers one-tap operation, unified control of in-room devices. Now let’s discover the immense benefits that schools can gain from implementing this futuristic smart divisible classroom.
1. Divisible Classroom
Before going deeper, it’s important to understand what divisible classrooms are and the advantages they offer.
1.1 What is a divisible classroom?
Divisible classrooms emerged as a solution for maximizing the utilization of limited space. They allow large spaces to be divided into smaller classrooms or merged into a larger one, depending on the number of students. These classrooms feature moveable walls that can be opened or closed to create separate or combined teaching environments, enabling educators to teach and interact with a greater number of students simultaneously.
1.2 Benefit of divisible classrooms
Divisible classrooms alleviate concerns about space constraints when accommodating larger classes. Educators can share audiovisual (AV) content across the smaller classrooms that are merged into one, enabling schools to make the most of their existing space without the need for costly expansions. By accommodating a greater number of students in a larger room, schools can increase their revenue while reducing operational and management expenses. But how do divisible classrooms operate, and what devices are necessary for an effective setup?
2. Essential devices for the divisible classroom
Divisible classrooms offer great flexibility in space utilization, but they require specific devices such as displays, speakers, document cameras, podiums, and more. Let’s explore these devices in detail and understand their significance.
Displays are an essential component of the divisible classroom. However, the type and size of the display depend on the room size, as divisible classrooms vary in size across different applications. The two popular display options are projection screens and interactive display panels.
2.1.1 Projection screen
For larger classrooms, a projection screen can be a suitable choice. Projection screens offer visually friendly large screen sizes, but they require a laser projector for image projection.
2.1.2 Interactive display panel
Interactive display panels are ideal for classrooms as they enable better engagement, interaction, and collaboration among teachers and students. For instance, the IQTouch 1100 Series interactive flat panel features built-in screen sharing software, allowing teachers and students to share screen contents from their laptops or mobile devices on a large screen (up to nine split screens). This facilitates collaborative activities such as brainstorming and group discussions, enhancing the overall teaching experience.
Additionally, interactive displays support video playback, AI whiteboards for efficient teaching, and built-in teaching software like Kitsmemos for interactive and engaging lessons. Multiple students can collaborate on the display simultaneously. Furthermore, interactive display panels can be paired with wireless presentation systems for convenient teaching.
2.1.3 Wireless presentation system
Teachers who bring their laptops to the classroom and wish to share their teaching content wirelessly can benefit from a wireless presentation system such as the IQshare box and dongle. By connecting the share box to the display, teachers can simply plug in the dongle to their laptops and share screen contents with a single tap. This feature offers teachers immense convenience in sharing locally stored or internet-based content during class.
To ensure better audibility for students, deploying two speakers in the classroom can enhance the sound effect. However, speakers are most effective when paired with a microphone, eliminating the need for teachers to raise their voices to be heard.
2.1.5 Document camera
Document cameras provide teachers with additional tools to enrich their teaching methods and interact with students effectively. Placed on the desktop, document cameras allow teachers to easily display items like A3 paper documents or other objects whenever needed. However, displaying content from the document camera requires connecting it to the interactive display.
2.1.6 Interactive Pen Display
Here, the interactive pen display also serves as teaching-enhancing devices, enabling teachers to annotate screen contents that can be synchronized with the interactive display behind them.
3. Unified control
Despite having all these useful devices in a divisible classroom, operating them individually and remotely can be cumbersome. Q-NEX offers the Networked Media Processor (NMP), capable of integrating all devices for unified control.
3.1 What can NMP do?
The NMP, a kind of control processor, features a built-in LAN switch, networked AV decoder, AV matrix switch, and more. With its universal AV ports, the NMP can integrate nearly all devices, allowing schools to connect them to the NMP for remote and unified control.
3.2 Independent room device Control
Through a touch panel, teachers can control all devices in the classroom with a single tap. For instance, teachers can turn on or off projectors, lower or raise projection screens, and adjust speaker settings. The same applies to devices like air conditioners and lighting.
3.3 Centralized AV control
One remarkable feature of the all-in-one NMP is its ability to enable teachers to control AV screen sharing within a room and synchronize AV content from the primary room to a secondary room. This provides teachers with great convenience. They can switch between AV input sources, such as their laptops or document cameras, to display content on the interactive panel with a single tap on the touch panel.
Moreover, by switching to divisible room mode on the touch panel, teachers can share AV content from the primary room to the secondary room. This ensures that all speakers and displays in the secondary room play the same media simultaneously.
3.4 Schedule task management
Another advantage is that IT administrators can set up automated schedules for device power on/off, such as lights and displays, according to predefined times. Additionally, AV broadcasting schedules can be configured to play audiovisual or text-based content based on a predetermined schedule.
The integration of a unified control system, such as a Networked Media Processor(NMP), allows for centralized control and management of all devices within the divisible classroom. With intuitive touch panel interfaces, teachers can effortlessly operate and control multiple devices, optimizing efficiency and creating a seamless learning environment. The NMP’s capabilities extend beyond device control, enabling scheduled task management and synchronized AV content sharing across multiple rooms.
The implementation of a well-equipped and intelligently controlled divisible classroom not only maximizes space utilization but also enhances teaching and learning experiences, fostering collaboration and efficiency. By embracing these technological advancements, educational institutions and companies can achieve the full potential of their spaces while promoting effective knowledge sharing and engagement.
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