Mimio Technology Chosen to Bring Spanish Educational Content to Schools in Mexico
In 2012, Grupo Santillana, a leading education-publishing group in Spain and Latin America, launched its Santillana Compartir project to provide digital educational content, services, and equipment to kindergarten, primary, secondary, and high schools across Mexico. As part of the project, the company decided to offer schools the option of acquiring a complete integral solution that incorporates Santillana digital content integrated with interactive devices and services. After careful consideration, they chose Mimio to be their technology provider.
Creating Digital Learning Environments
The aim of the Santillana Compartir project is to raise the quality of education and convert traditional classrooms into digital learning environments. In pursuit of this goal, Santillana leadership has formed partnerships with a variety of technology leaders in addition to Mimio, including Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, and Epson.
“To foster independent learning and expand learning possibilities, today’s students need better access to technology,” said Victor Giles, managing director of projects and digital services at Grupo Santillana Mexico. “We are certain that the traditional model has to change with regard to both academic process and technology.
“Outside of school,” Giles continued, “students have access to smartphones and mobile devices, but in schools that is not necessarily the case. So we are bringing new experiences to the classroom, starting with teachers.”
In the three years since the partnership with Mimio began, at least 400 schools in Mexico have purchased Santillana digital content bundled with the MimioTeach™ interactive whiteboard bar, which turns ordinary dry erase boards into interactive whiteboards, along with the MimioBoard™ fixed interactive whiteboard and the MimioPad™ wireless pen tablet, which provides remote control of any Mimio interactive device. To ensure that teachers are able to take full advantage of the new equipment and content, every school is assigned a coach, who travels to the different schools to promote and assist with technology integration. Mimio trains these coaches and digital counselors and then they replicate the knowledge in every school they support.
Ease of Use and Surprising Benefits
“Mimio devices are so easy to implement and use,” said Giles, “and MimioStudio™ software and Santillana digital content work together. So, for example, if teachers want to develop a math exercise, they can draw from the many resources in the MimioStudio Gallery and from Santillana’s Libromedia, which is the main digital resource online.”
According to Giles, using the Mimio devices has opened new avenues of communication between teachers and students. “Teachers are not only strengthening their digital skills,” he says, “but are also finding opportunities for interactive and collaborative work with their students.” The result is that teachers’ pedagogical vocabulary has expanded to include concepts in line with what students experience and do outside of the classroom. “We need to recognize that some teachers are afraid of new devices,” Giles said. “But when they work with students, they discover this new form of communication, this new digital language.”
And students are responding to the technology, content, and change in instruction. “We meet with the teachers initially and then we talk again, a few months later, to see whether they notice any differences,” explained Giles. He says teachers are reporting that students are more engaged with activities using technology. “When the students work with digital content and Mimio technology, their learning and retention are enhanced, they participate more, and they’re more excited about what’s going on in the classroom.”
“When the students work with digital content and Mimio technology, their learning and retention are enhanced, they participate more, and they’re more excited about what’s going on in the classroom.”
Victor Giles, managing director of projects and digital services
MimioTeach Facilitates Sales Demos
Santillana sales representatives have also been using the MimioTeach interactive whiteboard bars to demonstrate Santillana content at schools. “Our reps visit the different schools to show our content, but it’s difficult for them to take big interactive boards,” said Giles. “That’s another reason why we appreciate the MimioTeach so much.” The MimioTeach bar is lightweight and less than 15 inches long, making it ideal for onsite demonstrations. “We have about 200 people who are demonstrating at different schools,” noted Giles, “and it’s much easier and more efficient to take a MimioTeach bar than to struggle with transporting and setting up bulky equipment.”
Educators who attend the demos have been able to see how Mimio technology works with Santillana’s digital content, and the instructional potential of digital content on an interactive whiteboard quickly becomes obvious. Such firsthand observation has led to an increasing number of orders for the Santillana-Mimio technology bundles.
Plans for Expansion of Mimio Partnership
Since its inception, the Santillana Compartir project has been focused primarily on serving Mexico. But Grupo Santillana is now preparing to deliver and implement the Santillana-Mimio package offering in other Latin American countries, leveraging on the strong alliance between these two companies. Additionally, Grupo Santillana is planning another project aimed at serving schools.
“In this current project, I’m sure that Mimio is the right partner because we are moving in the same direction,” said Giles. “In our new project, I will need more support, especially in innovation and new components for digital classrooms. I know that Mimio will be the right choice for us once more.”