November 2, 2017
“Technology will never replace teachers, but a teacher who cannot teach with technology will be replaced by another one who can.” – Zuzana Molčanová, Slovakia
Teacher Engagement Manager
Zuzana Molčanová knew she wanted to be a teacher from an early age, but she had no idea what that really meant until she stood up in front of her students.
“I realized that students know a lot of information, and that I can learn from them,” she tells us. “[I knew that] if I wanted to be accepted and respected by them, I needed to respect them and be a partner and guide on their journey.”
Molčanová, who now works for Microsoft, helps other educators transform their classrooms with technology — something she did for her own students when she was a classroom teacher.
As a teacher, one of Molčanová’s favorite classroom activities used project-based learning to empower 10- and 11-year-old students. Using science text books, students were asked to select the most difficult themes in physics, and then create an app to help younger students understand them. Students not only had to research the content, they had to think about how to reach children even younger than them.
“The last step was creating the educational application in Microsoft Project Siena,” Molčanová explains. “It supports the development of children’s connections to computing by drawing upon creativity, imagination and interests.
In the end, we visited younger students and introduced them to our app. The feedback was really positive and both sides were satisfied with this new way of learning.”
Thinking about the state of education transformation in her country, Molčanová is optimistic.
“I am very happy and honored that I can work with teachers in Slovakia and help them to overcome their fear. One by one, we can make a big digital transformation in education,” she says. “Technology will never replace teachers, but a teacher who cannot teach with technology will be replaced by another one who can.”
About Zuzana Molčanová
- Educational background: Physics and IT teacher
- Favorite Microsoft product, tool, technology: OneNote, Minecraft
- What is the best advice you have ever received? Believe in yourself and do not compare.
- Website I check every day: Instagram, Facebook, Feedly
- Favorite childhood memory: A lot of happy memories with family and friends.
- Favorite book: The Hobbit by J.R.R.Tolkien