Globalisation and rapid, continuous technological change are presenting enormous challenges and making education ever more critical in preparing students for work and citizenship. In modern knowledge economies, education is not only the main driver of growth but a key social equalizer. However, it is vital that matters are kept in perspective so that education not only raises academic performance but also develops and nurtures the personal growth of children and ...

Creating a Drama studio

Most schools don’t have a designated drama studio but some have recently begun to convert old classrooms, or mobile classrooms, into drama spaces. These are my top tips for creating a drama studio: The whole room should be painted black. Including the ceiling! This is so that (a) any lighting can be used effectively; (b) there are no distractions; (c) it's practical and (d) it provides a blank canvas ...
In April this year, the NUT warned teachers about the dangers of befriending pupils on social networking sites such as Facebook. The implications are so great that some schools have banned teachers from using Facebook altogether. It's certainly true that Facebook can be a perilous place for teachers. Is it okay to accept a “friend request” from a pupil whom you know personally? What happens if you reject that friend ...
Have you ever wondered what happens to the thousands of old computers that we get rid of everyday? These days you can’t just throw IT equipment out and leave it for the dustmen. The WEEE Directive (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment), which was made law in 2007, means all of us have to dispose of our old computers carefully and safely. This is because all computers are full of toxic ...

"Oh No, Not RE, Miss!"

A supply teacher recently recounted her experience when asked to teach RE to a reluctant Year 6 class in a rural primary school. In introducing the lesson she was greeted with groans of “Oh no, not RE Miss!” Not a great start she thought. However, at the end of the lesson, clearly having won her pupils over, she was told “that wasn’t RE Miss, that was fun!” So why do ...
While the iPad is a welcome addition to homes and classrooms, it has also been the talk of the town for people with disabilities who are finding that some of the built-in accessibility features have enabled them to replace existing equipment or to use the plethora of apps being released each day. VoiceOver for example, allows screen reading for people with visual and literacy difficulties. With VoiceOver, you use gestures (...
Premier Interlink, a long established manufacturer of Modular Buildings Systems, has always been committed to minimising the environmental impact of its operations and products through the adoption of sustainable practices and continuous improvement in environmental performance. This respect for the environment has been key to the success of the business and the company's aim is therefore to continuously improve their environmental credentials. The award of FSC (Forest Stewardship Council®) certification ...
Packed with valuable technology and often open-plan, schools can be prime targets for both organised and opportunistic theft. Netbooks, laptops and tablets are small and light, so they can be easily concealed and removed from a building if the effective security measures are not in place. ICT theft does not just cause inconvenience for students, who may be left without computer equipment. Having laptops stolen can result in increased insurance ...
There's a secret to teaching kids how to use the computer. It's called 'delegate'. I don't mean delegate the teaching to aides or parents. Here, I'm referring to empowering students to be their own problem-solvers, then expect it of them. Here's how you do it: Let them know that computers aren't difficult. Aw, come on. I see your scrunched faces. Here's the ugly little truth: Computers are only hard to ...
There is no doubt that education leaders around the world are deeply aware of the challenges of creating appropriate education systems for today’s new era of rapid change and globalisation and recognise that education excellence is essential to the future success of individuals as family members, in the workplace and as informed, participatory citizens in their local communities and within society at large. Effective schooling aims to educate the ...

What is Radio 2.0?

The term 'podcasting' was added to The New American Oxford Dictionary in 2005, just a few days before the incredibly popular Ricky Gervais podcasts hit the BBC. In the space of just a few years, Podcasting has changed the world. Stand by for the next big thing as Radio 2.0 arrives. It’s also being referred to as live podcasting - the broadcasting of a live audio stream - and often the ...
Year 6 child: ‘Miss, do you think God is real?’Year 4 child: ‘Miss, what is the answer?’ Among the many useful pedagogical skills we can learn from the Ancient Greek philosopher Socrates, one of the most interesting is that of Socratic irony. The Chambers dictionary says that Socratic irony is "a means by which a questioner pretends to know less than a respondent, when actually he knows more." [Source: Wikipedia] Zoe ...
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