Pupils in Essex have been using 3D printers to explore the world of STEM and its place in modern careers. The Essex County Council-led programme has seen the likes of Plume School and William de Ferrers Academy experiment with machines sponsored by local business Lodge Information Services in their classes, and is an example of how schools can work with the private sector to explore such technology.
We are witnessing a huge sea change in the way education is being offered in our schools now. Devices are cheaper than ever, and it is now an option to provide a machine to every student in a school. Whether it is through BYOD, or the whole-scale purchase of technology for the classroom, 1:1 is becoming a reality in all of our schools.
My job as a Year One teacher is many things, but it is certainly never dull! I count dressing up, leaving mysterious messages and generally making a bit of a fool of myself as all in a day’s work! Luckily, my colleague is almost as crazy as me and fully on board for the ride! Faced with a lively and very enthusiastic cohort, we wanted to end the previous school year with a topic which would really engage them. Thus we began our topic ‘Do monsters live amongst us?’ by hooking pupils into Claire Freedman’s book: Monsters Love Underpants.
SMART Technologies, innovator and leading global provider of collaboration solutions, is introducing a unique and ground-breaking approach to technology in schools. Classroom As a Service, or SMART ClaaS, will aid UK schools in obtaining their needed edtech, including interactive displays, collaborative learning software, professional development and support from SMART and other best-in-class vendors. ClaaS will even buy a school’s existing IT assets to help finance their new subscription.
It’s September, which means the summer holidays are over and it’s business as usual. However, the classroom today’s pupils will return to has changed dramatically from that of our generation’s. Instead of blackboards and chalk (or whiteboards and pens) the modern classroom is full of technological devices, phones, laptops and tablets. Today’s pupils are using all kinds of new devices to create digital files and classwork has stretched beyond the simple notepad or poster board into the ether.
Conversor, leaders in assistive technology, have released a series of updates for their SEN-friendly Notetalker solutions which will help teachers as well as pupils. Notetalker App, combined with a Universal microphone and cable kit for any smartphone or tablet, uses a simple user interface which allows the recording of classes. These developments have been made with CPD and working on identified weaknesses, such as after an Ofsted inspection. The range of Notetalker products is priced from £4.99 to £119.98.
The integration of edtech into the everyday school environment has resulted in a diverse range of technologies being present in any one classroom – never mind across an entire school. More recently we’ve seen a steady move away from IWBs towards a variety of technology that encompasses personal devices such as tablets and smartphones, through to front-of-classroom teaching technologies, with a strong shift towards interactive flat panels.
As teachers we are notoriously hard on ourselves. It’s a common trait amongst the profession. After all, how often do you hear a colleague say they are “really good” at something? More often than not they will be playing down what a great job they do, often in challenging and changeable circumstances. This feeling of “can I really get it right again this year?” often creeps into the consciousness towards the end of the summer term and can lead to sleepless nights during the summer break.
The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) and Samsung Electronics UK and joined forces to develop and launch a new app which is set to inspire a whole new generation with Shakespeare’s work. RE:Shakespeare aims to transform the way pupils experience the work of Britain’s most prolific playwright, in and out of the classroom.
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