For our end-of-year celebrations, we wanted to interview an educator who embodies the unstoppable, innovative spirit of the education community. Thankfully, Nathan Ashman of Blackburn-based St Wilfrid's Church of England Academy was able to fit us into his busy schedule. We’d last seen Nathan at Lead, Learn, Lancs earlier this month, and wanted to find out how his year had gone as a whole.
I have recently started a couple of pieces of research into different aspects of teaching (and they say men cannot multitask!), but as I did this, one thing became very apparent to me. It is not the innovation itself, nor is it the strategy deployed, or even the relevant policy / guidelines / handbook / manual / research that aligns with it, that makes innovation successful. No, it is the attitude of the innovator and their peers.
I would just like to start off by saying that I am not an educational expert or a technological guru, I am just a practicing class teacher with a very keen interest in technology. It is my view that by encouraging technology in the classroom we can give our pupils learning that is more current, engaging and relatable. One of the ways I have done that is with the Raspberry Pi.
Encouraging students to take an interest in Science, technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects can often be a challenge. This is especially true when teaching is based around workbooks and theory; when students are unable to find a link between what they are being taught, the learning environment they are in and their own interests, they are more likely to disengage. With the ever-increasing technological advancements, it’s not surprising that the next generation of students are likely to enter the working world, looking for jobs that don’t even exist now. Therefore, we must strive to inspire children from a young age, in order to unveil talent and boost engagement.
Samsung have launched a companion app for the BBC micro:bit. Available via Google Play, the resource will connect the BBC micro:bit to smartphones and tablets, allowing young people to code on the go. By being introduced to connected technology and the Internet of Things, pupils will be able to control their smartphones or tablets via the micro:bit and come up with fun applications, such as building their own ‘selfie’ remote controller. Samsung has also developed micro:bit projects for parents and teachers.
With Bett taking place this week, schools across the country are once more turning their attention to the opportunities offered by education technology (edtech), looking for the newest innovations in classroom resources to support teaching in the digital age. But behind the excitement of new developments, what are the crucial factors that schools need to consider moving forward with their edtech provisions?
To make the most of today’s Ada Lovelace Day celebrations - which recognise 19th century mathematician and writer Augusta Ada King, Countess of Lovelace - Code Club have created some fun and engaging resources for schools to use. For many, 13th October is an annual celebration of the achievements of women in Science, technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).
In the business world, gamification has become something of a buzzword. The idea is to take elements from digital games and add it to enhance a customer’s experience. In consumer websites and mobile applications, this can mean digital badges, leaderboards to track scores, levels to unlock, and other reward mechanisms.