Giving Compass' Take:

• Tara García Mathewson explains how prototype augmented reality glasses allow a teacher to see students progress on a personalized learning assignment in real time. 

• How can funders help schools connect their EdTech with personal attention from teachers? 

• Read about the pros and cons of EdTech

Robert Mawhinney’s math students each sat at their own computers, solving equations. As he looked around the room, he saw some students had smiley faces floating above their heads, some had question marks or exclamation points, and a few had Zzzs. He tapped the air in front of him and up popped a view of a student’s computer screen.

The glasses, called Lumilo, are powered by an app that works with “cognitive tutor” programs, which use artificial intelligence to offer students feedback as they attempt problems, hints when they struggle and an adaptive set of questions based on their performance.

When Mawhinney tested out the glasses, he could scan the room and the icons would tell him who was on track, who was stuck and who seemed to have abandoned the assignment altogether.

Mawhinney could also look at the classroom wall and see what portion of students had mastered a given topic. If the floating percentage indicated few had succeeded with a particular skill, Mawhinney could stop everyone and offer a group lesson. If it suggested several students were struggling with the same skill, he could pull those students aside while everyone else continued to work on their own computers.

Lumilo is the brainchild of a team at Carnegie Mellon University. Ken Holstein, a doctoral candidate at the university, designed the app with significant input from teachers like Mawhinney who use cognitive tutors in their classrooms. The project treads new ground for the use of artificial intelligence in schools.

“The focus has been on how can we make personal tutors to enhance student learning,” Holstein said. “A major stakeholder that has been left out of the equation was the teacher.”

Read the full article about augmented reality for the classroom by Tara García Mathewson at The Hechinger Report.