Tuesday, 18 November 2008

What schools need? How they do it in Havering, Safer Internet Day, Edcity

Hello and welcome to another week of ICT Updates for Primary from Anthony Evans and Nicholas Hughes.

And to begin with here's a thought provoking video from Robin Hood School and NCSL, enjoy...

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In this weeks issue:

  • Anthony and Nicholas go to Havering Subject Leaders Meeting

  • Education City - Where now?

  • Safer Internet Day

  • What every school needs?
This week we attended the Havering ICT Subject Leaders Meeting.

We came away with a few gems to share with our Redbridge Subject Leaders. It was also interesting to compare and contrast the provision for subject leaders in each of our authorities.

Here are some thoughts and observations.

  • Fronter - over 22 Havering primaries have taken the London MLE, this is almost 50% of the borough. Some exciting practice is already emerging.

  • The Havering Blogging Network - schools are encouraged to use edublogs for blogging and we where told of one school where a group of children acted as a news team for the school blog. This is a good way to facilitate blogging from children. It also take the pressure of teachers.

  • Like Redbridge Havering promotes the use of Video Conferencing and during the meet we linked up with the National Archives and also the rest of the ICT subject leaders at another school.

  • Interestingly this session was a 90 minute twilight session, unlike Redbridge which is a day, with free lunch and supply cover paid. (Now you know how lucky you are!)

  • We looked again at a range of mini-laptops including the Fizzbook and the RM Asus Minibook (windows version) A reminder from Nic - Remember if you want to network your mini-laptops they must have Windows XP Pro installed NOT XP Home. Most new mini-laptops come with XP Home. Remember to ask at Bett.

  • We also saw the Veho USB Microscope - Click the link for a review.

    It's is a nifty little microscope as the name suggests. It seemed to have really go picture quality. I have one on order and a fuller review will follow soon.

However Nic's arrived yesterday and it seems great. It is very intuitive and easy to use.

What every school needs? - By Nic

In my work I am lucky enough to visit many schools and talk to many ICT Subject Leaders.

On a recent visit to a school with new subject leaders, we got into a discussion about what is essential for ICT to be successful and embedded throughout the school.

These are the 5 things that we felt needed to be in place.

  1. Hardware – need to be working and well supported – The ideal is a on site person and external support.

  2. There needs a range of good software in school to support discrete and cross curricular ICT

  3. Teachers need have confidence through....
    - Having a positive attitude.
    - Training and INSET based on identified needs based on audits.

  4. The Network/Server needs to be clearly organised.

  5. There needs to be good levels of communication.

What do you think?

Do you agree is there something that has been omitted?

Safer Internet Day - 10th February 2009

To mark European Safer Internet Day, your school can download a pack of resources including new KS2 and 3 assemblies. CEOP will be creating and signposting you to all the resources you need for SID 2009. We would also like to hear your plans for the week.Get it in your school diary NOW! February 2009.

This is the perfect opportunity to introduce Internet safety to students or to consolidate the teaching you have already implemented.

CEOP's Thinkuknow programme will be producing a pack of resources available for download.
Click here to register and CEOP will keep you up-to-date with developments. You will be able to download the resource pack early February 2009.

Education City - Where now?

School leaders and ICT Subject Leaders, should now have had the detail about our Education City offer. If for some reason You have not seen this letter from Alex Rees, then read on:

Education City licensing arrangement
The London Borough of Redbridge currently holds a licence for all primary schools to have access to the Education City online content. The licence is due to expire at the end of November 2008 and the borough cannot fund a renewal of this licence.
We are aware that several schools make extensive use of this product and are confident that it is making a significant difference to the educational experiences they are providing for their students. Education City content covers Literacy, Maths, Science and French and has material designed specifically for Foundation, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 students. At the normal listed prices subscription for Education City is £860 for 1 year or £1634 for 2 years.

Further information about the product is available at http://www.educationcity.com/.

We have been in negotiation with Education City to ensure we support our schools currently using this product, and enabling other schools not yet using the product to explore its potential. Education City have agreed that if Redbridge schools purchase together then you will be offered a discount price of £817 for a 2-year licence extension. This extension will only be applied to schools who opt in to this arrangement. This reduced price will be available up until the end of November.

If you wish to find out more about this product then three Redbridge schools have already agreed with Education City to be ‘Champion Schools’. You may wish to contact them to discuss whether the product may be useful for you. They are:

  • Churchfields Infants School

  • Clore Tikva Primary School

  • Gearies Infants School

Should you wish to take part in this offer then please contact Gary Jelks , immediately with a purchase order number for the licence. If you are using email please include the code ‘EC-renew’ in the subject line. This information must be with Gary by the 1st December 2008. He will ensure that your licence is then extended until the end of November 2010.

It is not the London Borough of Redbridge’s policy to promote individual ICT products. However an educational demand has clearly been demonstrated for this product and the Borough has therefore negotiated an arrangement to the benefit of the schools.
Yours sincerely,
Alex Rees

Last minute links

http://www.computeractive.co.uk/computeractive/video/2230140/zoostorm-fizzbook-video-review - A video review of the Fizzbook

http://www.jurassicpunk.com/ - a site containing lots of videos and movie trailer. Idea for film work within the Renewed Literacy Framework.

http://www.slamnet.org.uk/smart/defaultmaths.htm - a selection of help sheets for Smart Notebook 9.

Saturday, 8 November 2008

ICT Update - IWB Science, Display Pictures, Childnet CDS for Parents

Wrapping Paper made with 2Paint a Picture

Repeating Patterns Work from Y3/4 @ Fullwood Primary- Well Done Class 6

Welcome to this weeks ICT update.

This began as a shorter than usual update, but once again I have found the world of ICT is rarely dull and never stands still and so here is another bumper pack of news,links and resources.

In this issue:

  • Science and the Whiteboard

  • CD ROMS for Parents - get them while you can!

  • Next Generation Learning

  • Christmas Activities

  • ICT Week @ Churchfields Infants

  • Anything to Share

Science Clips for the Whiteboard

Teachers TV, have recently added Science Clips to their stock of video shorts that already exist for both Literacy and Numeracy. These short clips provide a hook/ way in for lesson on themes such as 'Solids,Liquids and Gases', Sound and Habitats. The clips can be streamed directly from Teachers TV or downloaded, provided you have a Teachers TV account!


If your school blogs, or uses a web authoring package like Dreamweaver, you might also consider encouraging teachers to embed Bytesize resources from the BBC into their pages. This is very easily done, and I know that Christchurch Primary did this in Year Six last year as a way of assissting children in their revision. All that is needed is to copy the embed code underneath the activity and paste it into the website or blog, when in 'Edit html' view

CD Roms for parents - get them while you can

During some of my recent ESafety events for schools, I have given out copies of the very informative 'Know it All for Parents' from Childnet. This resource explains in plain english how parents can help their children to use the internet and stay safe online, and includes technical tips like how to check internet history. 'Know it All' has recently been updated and is available free for schools, if they require.....sorry I can not bulk order for everyone, I did try.

In a recent post on Safetynet, Stephen Carrick Davies had this to say:

I am delighted to announce that with the support from BECTA and the DCSFa further half a million copies of 'KNOW IT ALL FOR PARENTS' CD Roms have been duplicated and are ready for schools to order free of charge from today.

See news announcement at http://www.childnet.com/news/articles/091008.html The new version includes updated sections on Cyberbullying, SocialNetworking and a short overview on 'Where to Report'. As with the earlier version, all the content is presented in video format with links to wider resources and pdf leaflets which parents and teachers can download from the disc.

We have also added Welsh to the translations of the overview section (now in 10 languages) The SMART content aimed atprimary school aged children is also now in British Sign Language. All this content has also been updated on the Childnet.com website see http://www.childnet.com/kia/parents/cd/

If you have any questions about ordering please email the Childnet team at info at childnet.com

Next Generation Learning

Officially launched last week is BECTAs Next Geneartion Learning campaign and its associated website. It is fantastic looking site, which will give simple explanations of school technologies, while pointing out the benefits of using and embedding this stuff in your school. It could prove a great resource for parents, heads and ICT coordinators.

My favourite area is the benefits section ,here we are reminded that:

  • Schools that use technology well across the curriculum and wider school life have reduced absence rates and achieve a higher percentage of A*-C grades at GCSE.

  • Pupils studying Key Stage 2 Maths, Science and English in schools which make the best use of ICT, improve at twice the rate of the national average.

  • When young people use technology to support their learning at home they do better in national tests.

I am slightly ambivalent about the front page -'Take the Test' area- here teachers or parents can input their postcode, or their schools postcode and find out whether their 'child’s school is geared up for Next Generation Learning?'. This allows you to find out whether your school has achieved ICT Mark status. I inputted my postcode and found that my local school was not 'geared up for Next Geneartion Learning'. I got thie message:

Unfortunately, there are no schools within the post code area IG3 that have achieved the ICT mark accreditation

Christmas Activities

Iboard resources for Christmas can be accessed via the LGFL content grid, but for speed and for those outside London, click on the link below

ICT Week @ Churchfields Infants

Before Half Term Churchfields Infants held a very successful and creative ICT week. I was lucky enought to be in the school after the event and nab a few pictures and discuss with the teachers what had gone on.

Pictured above are just some of the resources that the school uses to teach ICT in Foundation and above, proving once again that ICT is not just about computers.

Beebot jacket - pupils in Nursery made jackets for their Beebots. This is a great activity and far cheaper than buying the customised Beebot skins from TTs. If you want to make your own, or rather make them with the children, then see the templates on the Kent resource page on Beebots, here

Children also worked in groups to create their own adventure mats for the little yellow fellow to negotiate.

Finally the images below where taken in the school hall, where you can clearly see the progression in ICT from Reception to Year 2.

Anything to Share

It is great to post national updates on this page, but I am sure the most inspiring element of this blog is seeing work from local schools and hearing about what is going on across the borough. It needn't be wow and wizzy, it could be just ordinary ICT objectives - but done well. Whatever it is email me an image or 7 alongside a brief paragraph. Following a small edit from me, we will then post your school ICT experience here in order that others can share and be inspired.