On Friday 21st of April the Digital Learning Team launched the Innovation Centre for Education.
The centre was put together in collaboration with CGI and XMA. It showcases digital technology available to schools through the refresh with CGI, as well as devices that can be purchased through other suppliers. The items on show include apps and accessories for iPad, Virtual Reality headsets, programmable toys, laptops and desktops.
Guests at the launch included representatives from Edinburgh schools, CGI, XMA, Apple and Edinburgh Council. They had the opportunity to find out the aims for the centre and how it was created, they also had a chance to try out all the kit in the room and chat to the Digital Learning Team.
The Innovation Centre will soon be opening for schools in Edinburgh to book a visit. This will provide an opportunity to try out the available technology and work on the digital strategy for schools, with the support from the DLT. Schools will be informed when they are able to book sessions.
We would like to thank CGI, XMA and Edinburgh Council in their support with this project.
Blog post by Secondary Development Officer, Anna Kellner:
I have returned to teaching for two half days a week and am experimenting with the use of Class Notebook. I opted for the use of Class Notebook in an attempt to motivate learners who find maths a challenging subject. In the short time I have been using OneNote Class Notebook I am already aware of a number of advantages. These include pupils being able to access work anytime, anywhere, the efficient and easy monitoring and marking of work, the ability to differentiate material and provide timely feedback to learners.
How it worked…
I put notes into the Content Library so that pupils have something they can refer back to.
I then populated the pupil notebooks with corresponding sections containing questions on all of the topics.
Pupils worked independently on these questions whilst I monitored their work and marked everything they did from my own device.
If there was something that multiple pupils were struggling with then I would stop the class and go over the concept, these notes would go straight into the Content Library.
Whilst the pupil notebooks were populated with questions and tasks, for all of the upcoming topics, pupils did not have access to all of them at once.
To gain access to different sections pupils had to first complete the initial section, with the answers revealing the password to unlock the next stage. This allowed for self-paced learning and made differentiation inherent to the process, whilst ensuring learners’ knowledge was secure in each topic before moving on.
The class have been working well and they are engaged in their learning, they have also shown interest in accessing the notebook from home. The ability to constantly monitor and assess all pupil work has meant that I am aware of misconceptions at an early stage. Therefore I am able to scaffold and support individual learning needs.
For a guide on using OneNote Class Notebook click here.
The Math Learning Center have created some excellent resources for supporting numeracy and maths. Their apps are available for iPad or can be accessed via a web browser on a PC, but even better they are completely free. The web based versions can be used for whole class lessons or to support groups with the interactive features. You’ll no longer have to go searching the maths cupboard for the long lost geoboards and elastic bands, concrete materials for counting and 2D shapes!
Please click on the icon or here to view the courses that are being offered by the Digital Learning Team this term.
Please note that these courses are for staff at the City of Edinburgh Council only.
A separate flyer with CPD specifically for probationary teachers in Edinburgh will be emailed directly.
Ciara and Lucy, Digital Leaders at Fox Covert RC share their experiences of the iTeach Digital Leaders Lab in this week’s guest post!
Fox Covert RC Primary Digital Leaders
In our school everyone is part of a pupil group. This year our Pupil Council and ICT Group joined together to become the Digital Leaders. At the start of the year we had a meeting to discuss what we wanted to achieve. Some of the ideas we came up with were; creating tutorials on how to use apps, making sure our iPads have the apps they are supposed to have and raising funds for new iPads.
One of our first jobs was to use Meraki to download the apps we needed. Then we organised the apps into folders so we could find them easily.
We found out that iTeach were planning their first Digital Leaders Lab in Scotland and we were very excited. The day of the trip we had to get to school by 8.20am because we had to travel to George Watson’s. When we got there we had snacks and were told what we were going to do. Digital Leaders from Tynecastle High School showed us iPad tricks and tips in small groups. Then we had a Kidsmeet. Digital Leaders from some of the schools showed everyone one they use. We prepared a short presentation showing how we use iMovie and even prepared a short trailer.
After that, we split into two workshops and learnt lots of interesting things. One of the workshops demonstrated how to use a robotic ball called Sphero, that you could program using the app Lightning Lab. The other workshop was about how to create trailers using iMovie. Ten of the children in our Digital Leaders Group attended the training. We learned a lot and thought it was a very successful event!
At assembly, we shared our experience with the other Digital Leaders and the rest of the school. We are planning our own Kidsmeet to share more tips and tricks with all of our classes. We would also like to arrange some drop-in sessions to show people how to use other apps.
Check out Fox Covert RC Primary’s guide to using iMovie and sample their wonderful work below!
Have you seen the great free apps made by Adobe? They have been around a while but have recently been relaunched. They include Adobe Spark Video, Spark Post and Spark Page. The apps are really simple to use, include built in copyright-free icons and images and easy to follow instructions on how to use the apps.
These apps allow pupils and teachers to create beautiful content and are a great way to share learning and teaching. Spark in the Classroom provides inspiration, teacher and pupil created content and lesson plans to get you started. Please feel free to add comments about how you have/might use these in the classroom.
App creators Duck Duck Moose have joined forces with Khan Academy making all their apps free to use!
Duck Duck Moose have created 22 apps to “encourage imagination, creativity, and learning in children”. These apps are mainly targeted at the early years and primary stages and are broadly categorised as curriculum, nursery rhymes, creative expression and play.
Draw & Tell
This is a great app offering different backgrounds and drawing tools with the added bonus of a voiceover recording feature. Like Explain Everything for primary pupils!
A creative and easy to use app which allows you to bring any picture to life for up to 30 seconds. Great for pupils to summarise learning, share ideas or explain concepts in a fun and engaging way.
Superhero Comic Maker/Princess Fairy Tale Maker
Nice and simple storytelling animation apps for young children with lots of pre-made templates to help scaffold the storytelling process.
Literacy & Maths
The literacy and maths apps on offer are well worth a look for reinforcing learning with Moose Math and Pet Bingo helping practise some early level SEAL concepts in different ways.