Augmented Reality in the Early Years

Augmented Reality (AR) is technology which superimposes digitally generated information on to the user’s view of reality, this may take the form of a video, 2D or 3D image etc. AR works well with the iPad and a number of apps have been created which can be used creatively in teaching and learning, here are just a few examples.

AR Flashcards 

IMG_0274The award-winning company, AR Flashcards, has created free flashcards which can be downloaded from the website. Once downloaded the app is used to scan the cards or ‘triggers’ to reveal a 3D image. There are two sets of free cards including the alphabet and dinosaurs. Once scanned, touching the image on-screen causes the letter/dinosaur’s name to be read out. Multiple cards can be viewed simultaneously allowing the alphabet to be used for letter recognition, ordering and the spelling of short words such as CVC/CVVC and sight words.



IMG_0265Chromville is a great, free AR app. There are five worlds on Planet Chromville, each with different themes. Currently there is one chapter (picture) for each world which, once coloured in, could act as a stimulus for both storytelling and creative writing. There are also customisable characters, which once personalised, could stimulate individual or collaborative digital storytelling.




Phonic Tricksters

IMG_0261Phonic Tricksters is a great app for consolidating and assessing knowledge of phonics in a fun and interactive way. Children will love chasing the Tricksters, who have stolen phonemes, around the room. In order to progress to the next stage they must identify the phoneme with a matching word. This app is free to trial and requires an in app purchase of 69p to unlock all the Tricksters.

Other interesting AR apps created by PBS Kids include Fetch! Lunch Rush, which practices addition to 20 and Cyberchase 3D Builder which, designed for 6-9 year olds, practices problem solving with 2D and 3D shape.

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‘Movie in a Day’ @ D’Mains Primary

Primary 6B at Davidson’s Mains Primary School worked with retired Drama specialist Marjory Sweeney and film maker Brian English of “Movie in a Day” to make a movie in a day. The class experienced the entire process of film making including pre-production, production and post-production.

Prior to the day of filming the class received a script for which they had to audition and screen test actors, create sets, costumes and posters to publicise the event. On the day of filming the children were in teams and supported in filming, directing and editing the movie. They were taught how to get the best shot, how to film a picture and how to direct their actors. Using iMovie the editing team inserted music and cut scenes to create the final one minute film.

The day culminated in the premiere of the movie where pupils were able to celebrate success and receive feedback for future projects. ‘Movie in a Day’ is ideal for P6 pupils who can then develop and share their skills with younger pupils. Take a look at the final product produced entirely by the children!

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CPD September – December 2014

Flyer for blog

Please click the link below to download the flyer of upcoming CPD courses offered by the team. There are new courses in Office 365, Meraki and Programming for Primaries.

DLT Course flyer 2014

To see them in the CPD directory click here.

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Digital Safety Workshops @ Clermiston Primary

IMG_0443Last term Primary 5 at Clermiston Primary School worked on a Digital Safety project. Groups were assigned CfE levels Early to Second. Using resources from the Digital Learning Team website they researched information, games and apps suitable for their target audience.  They shared safety tips using the creative apps Book Creator, Adobe Voice, Keynote and iMovie. The groups ran workshops with children from across the school, sharing what they had created and showing them apps and activities they could access on the iPad. Children who attended share their top tops in the video below.

The project was a great success and just the start of some great ideas Clermiston Primary have planned for raising the profile of digital safety and using iPads as a tool to enhance learning and teaching across all levels.

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360 Degree Safe – free digital safety tool

360 Degree Safe is a free, award winning, digital safety review tool designed by SWGfL’s E-Safety Team. It allows schools to review current digital safety provision and, on a five-point scale, provides benchmarks for improvement in the following areas:

  • 360 logoPolicy and Leadership (Responsibilities, Policies, Communications and Communication Technologies)
  • Infrastructure (Passwords, Services)
  • Education (Students, Staff, Parents and Carers)
  • Standards (Monitoring)

Key Features of 360 Degree Safe Scotland

  • Progress. A summary of the school’s progress in digital safety is readily available and easily accessible.
  • Resources. Clear advice and resources are provided to support improvement.
  • Engagement. Multiple users can be registered to contribute to this online, working document.
  • Benchmarking. Continuous feedback on progress is provided by benchmarking progress compared to other schools.
  • Action Planning. Records and reports next steps which can inform the school development plan.
  • Reports. Progress Reports can be downloaded immediately in a variety of file formats.
  • Celebrates. Once registered a “Commitment to E-Safety” certificate can be printed and displayed.
  • Accredits. Once reaching the required standards a school can apply for an external evaluation and, if successful, will be awarded with the E-Safety Mark. (This application incurs a cost)

Find out more

Visit where you can register for free, experiment with the tool and watch short instructional videos.

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Sciennes Primary – the 1:1 iPad classroom

Sciennes Primary was part of the City of Edinburgh 1:1 pilot scheme which began in March 2012. Then in P5, one of the current P7 classes has experienced the use of iPads for the entire period, with all pupils in P7 now experiencing 1:1 at school and home. Before moving on to high school some pupils from each of the P7 classes have had the opportunity to reflect on the use of the iPad and the impact on their learning.

Fiona Barker, Wendy French and Forrest Howie, P7 teachers, have normalised the use of iPads in teaching and learning and the children view them as indispensable to their learning. The P7 pupils talk positively of the impact on their ability to be creative and use apps that best support their learning. Online sharing space allows the class to receive work and files that flip traditional learning. This space is used to store work and receive feedback in an online environment. The children enjoy the ability to edit work instantly, create high quality pieces and share these with their families at home.

The pupils view technology as “the key to the future” and realise how innovative their teachers, and they as learners, have been able to be in a 1:1 learning environment. Take a look at the following video which captures a snapshot of the pupils’ learning journey with iPads.


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Sumdog Contest: Friday 20th June – Thursday 26th June


As the school year comes to a close a great way to keep your class motivated and consolidating maths skills would be to join in the free Sumdog contest. The contest opens at 8am this Friday and runs until Thursday 26th June. Children will compete with their peers across Edinburgh for a chance to win some great prizes. Click here to join the contest, if you have any questions or need help joining contact

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