The above is me after one of our training climbs - tweets intact! In my last post, on virtual reality, I wrote about how I could fly over Chicago or climb high mountains effortlessly. All you needed was Google Cardboard. Well, what do you do if you want to document a real adventure?
Imagine Mr Jones, an urban schoolteacher who has been teaching eight-and nine-year-olds for the past five years. The few times he has introduced his students to a learning app or digital game, they have nearly levitated off their chairs with excitement. But he couldn’t get past the gee-whiz factor. The feeling that edtech was entertaining, but not germane to his teaching.
Today The Edtech Podcast announced a strategic partnership with Innovate My School. Launched in May by Sophie Bailey, the programme includes edtech interviews, trends and news, and is downloaded in 69 countries, including the UK and US, Brazil, China and Saudi Arabia. This strategic partnership will see the podcast published and shared via Innovate My School.
A west London school has energised their Science lessons by using an interactive textbook. The Heathland School in Hounslow has begun using IntoScience, an immersive and highly engaging interactive 3D environment which brings the theory of science to life. It is aimed particularly at pupils aged 12-16 (KS3-4) and covers all fields of the subject. IntoScience was developed by Mathletics creators 3P Learning.
In true Scottish storytelling fashion, there is a tale, which may or may not be true, that tells of when Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence was in its infancy, in the middle of the first decade of the millennium. The tale was that - along with the areas of Literacy, Numeracy and Health & Wellbeing – ICT was to be a responsibility of all practitioners. This would mean that every Scottish educator would be required to explicitly take ownership of supporting and tracking the digital skills of the learners in their care. Then sadly, the story goes, for some reason ICT was quietly removed from the ‘responsibility of all category’ and subsumed under the banner of technologies.
If you’re reading this article, it’s likely that you’re at least a bit techy. You might be a newbie in your first or second year of teaching: a newbie who wants to learn from other like-minded educators all over the world. Or maybe you’re a knowledgable teacher: you’re at the top of your game in many ways, but your New Year’s resolution is to take on new challenges—ones that will step up your teaching. Or perhaps you’re several years into your career: you’re an excellent teacher who is committed to lifelong learning.
Most students in school today are digital natives. They’ve grown up with smartphones and tablets, interacting with the world in a very different way than we did 15 years ago. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, we're just a click away from information about any topic imaginable. The world has become smaller, metaphorically speaking, and texts are no longer confined to books in a library. Instead there’s a range of interactive resources, image banks, online archives, web-pages, audiovisual material and more recently apps for smartphones and tablets, all readily accessible.
At the time of writing, the annual BBC Proms season is now underway, an eight week celebration of music concerts, talks, workshops, family events and more. This year to mark the opening pupils from four primary schools have been invited to take part in two Proms concerts at the Royal Albert Hall, celebrating the first year of BBC Ten Pieces.
It’s an exciting time for those interested in the role digital technology can play in education. There's no shortage of inspiration; talented, creative and passionate entrepreneurs around the world are using a range of innovations to improve the lives of people and their communities, and it's those using digital technology to improve education and learning that really stand out.