From multi-user interactivity to student collaboration, Epson’s latest models of ultra-short throw projectors have improved teaching for Victoria’s Chairo Christian School, the institutions ICT manager says.
Victoria’s West Gippsland region is home to Chairo Christian School, a co-ed school offering Pre-Kinder through to Year 4.
The school’s Drouin East Junior Campus recently received three EB-595Wi projectors, and the institution’s ICT Manager, Daryl Tate, believes the upgrades have made a significant improvement to the teaching of Prep and Year 1 classes.
Daryl says Epson’s high quality brand of projectors has seen the school recently install 30 projectors at its Packenham, Drouin East and Leongatha campuses.
The models include the EB-585W, EB-585Wi, EB-595Wi, which were installed by Save Time Visuals Senior Integration Consultant, Jakob Malinovsky.
With more than 10 years’ experience installing audio visual equipment, Jakob says ultra-short throw projectors reduce costs for schools and are ideal for interactive presentations.
He explains that the EB-585W displays images only, while the EB-585Wi offers pen interactivity and the EB-595Wi offers finger and pen interactive capabilities.
“Either the student is working interactively with a pen, or with the other model they can use their pen and finger,” Jakob says.
“Epson’s three projectors provide an attractive option due to the size of the screen, so it projects to a normal whiteboard, but you don’t have to have additional infrastructure.”
Daryl says upgrading to a finger touch model enables all children to participate in activities on the board easily.
“The Epson EB-595Wi projectors have a clear and bright image that is readable across the whole room in normal daylight conditions,” Daryl says.
“They are eager to be involved and engaged with the lessons, and being able to display multiple sets of information keeps the learning happening without long delays of deleting old information,” he says.
Daryl explains the projectors are used on a day-to-day basis in calendar exercises at the beginning of the day, which leads to a clock activity allowing students to develop a sense of time, past, present and future.
“Birthdays are a lot of fun as we can look forward as a group to share the momentous occasion with a song.
“Students will read the numeral and number word versions of a number, counting, sequence and measurement activities. Alphabet recognition, phonics and high frequency words exercises are also routine uses.”
It complements the use of iPads in group work, where the output of the application can be shared wirelessly to the projector, Daryl says, which further enables classroom sharing and discussions.
“We use the Teacher Notebook to display interactive activities, music, picture searches and internet use while using the interactive projector as the ‘mouse’.”
He says all staff members are enthusiastic about Epson’s interactive projection systems.
“They are sharing tips and resources to improve classroom engagement and reach the wide spectrum of learning types within each classroom.
“Overall we are very impressed with the continued improvements in the technology which gives significant benefits to the modern classroom.”
Jakob explains that Epson’s unique product also means no additional software is required, as the technology can be installed simply by plugging it into a laptop or desktop computer.
“The lamps are also very low cost. Schools are running long hours, and most of the time if they’re changing lamps, it’s a very big consideration.”
According to Epson, the company’s low-cost lamps offer up to 6,000 hours lamp life in ECO mode, which is defined as low power mode, a mode used to reduce energy consumption.
Jakob says compared to older projectors Epson’s current models use ultra-short throw projection, which means the projectors are installed in closer proximity to whiteboards, improving the quality of the display.
Ultra-short throw projectors use special lenses so they can be mounted only inches from the presentation, Jakob says, which means they are ideal for interactive presentations as there is no risk of projector light shining in the eyes of teacher or student.
Jakob says another main feature of the projector is widescreen functionality, which increases the width of the display.
He says the devices feature multi-user interactivity, meaning teachers and students can annotate at the same time, offered in both the EB- 585Wi and EB-595Wi models.
Another advantage of the device on the EB-585W is brighter images, Jakob says, with up to 3,300 lumens white brightness and colour brightness. Images this bright mean they are highly visible in high ambient light conditions, such as those in the middle of a sunny day with blinds and curtains open.
Epson’s three models of ultra-short projectors also feature 16W built-speakers, which have built in audio with the capacity to fill the room.
Modelled as bring your own device technology, the projectors cater to 21st century learning practice of teachers using their own personally owned devices in the classroom, including laptops, tablets and smartphones.
All models offer advanced networking capability, allowing the devices to be monitored, controlled and presented from a remote location.
Each device also allows for up to 50 devices to connect to the projector, combined with a moderator function which can be used to manage and control images displayed on the screen.
All models incorporate a classroom friendly design, as ultra-short projectors are designed to blend in with of ce or classroom surroundings, even when wall mounted. The setting plate and cable cover keep cables out of sight.
Both the EB-585Wi and EB-595Wi feature SMART NotebookTM software, which provides an enhancement to classroom learning by facilitating student collaboration and game-based learning software.
Jakob says feedback from teachers in information sessions showed the interactive features of the projector technologies freed up teacher’s lesson times by up to 35 per cent.
“They don’t have to jump between laptop to whiteboards. You do everything from the projector; you don’t have to use your laptop in a lesson.
“One of the advantages of Epson is you’re doing everything with your mouse or laptop touchpad. You’re whiteboard becomes interactive, so you don’t have to purchase a separate device.
“What Epson did is they combined everything into one, so you only need a basic whiteboard to go interactive.”
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