Researchers at Durham University are giving classrooms a makeover, replacing students’ wooden desktops with interactive multi-touch ones. Along with a team of educators and manufacturers, the researchers have recently unveiled SynergyNet, a hardware-software system similar to Microsoft Surface that offers an immersive and potentially more engaging learning experience for youngsters. Pupils using the interactive tables can, for example, work out math problems visually and physically (using their fingertips to move around units) or see the teacher’s blackboard demonstrations right on their desks. The system has already been implemented in one unnamed UK school and is expected to appear in other primary and secondary schools over the next few years.

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