UK teachers strike gold in California

Discovery Education

Discovery Education empowers teachers and captivates pupils by providing high-quality, dynamic, digital content to Primary and Secondary schools. They offer a range of services and opportunities for schools to meet the needs of students in the digital age. This includes award-winning digital content, interactive lessons, virtual experiences with some of Discovery's most talented presenters and contributors, classroom challenges, professional development and more.

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Six tech-savvy Primary school teachers will be inspiring their pupils this term after spending part of the summer break at a celebrated teaching event in California. The Discovery Education Summer Institute is held annually in the US, and attracts educators from all over the world. The British teachers - from schools in Birmingham, London and Hertfordshire - were chosen for their enthusiasm in using new technology in the classroom. They were flown to San Diego where they joined over 100 educators for a week of professional development at the University of California. 

Now in its 12th year, the Discovery Education Summer Institute gives teachers new digital strategies and techniques to transform lessons. The exciting summer programme is the flagship event of the Discovery Education Community – one of the world’s largest education networks.

One of the UK delegates was teaching assistant Hayley Evans from Woolenwick Infant and Nursery School in Stevenage. She said:

“The Summer Institute was a unique opportunity to see how other teachers use technology to enhance learning right across the curriculum, and I was honoured to be asked to attend. The Discovery Education Community outreaches to various countries and cultures, and it was wonderful to tap into this global expertise! I’m looking forward to putting it into practice in my lessons.”

Arriving in San Diego in late July, the UK teachers took part in an exciting week of interactive workshops and networking with colleagues from North America’s leading digital schools.

Exploring new classroom technology was a highlight of the event, and one of the most popular tools on display was Goose Chase – a flexible app which creates bespoke scavenger hunts.

Using digital media to engage children, and boost learning and achievement, was another key focus at The Summer Institute. The teachers saw first-hand how digital media – such as video content from Discovery Education Espresso’s vast learning library– can be used to kick-start independent learning.

Chris Nash, head of community at Discovery Education UK, said: “Creativity and inquiry were two of the strongest themes to surface at this year’s event. Digital media can be a gateway to immersive, creative learning, helping teachers to provide a richer learning experience while meeting curriculum goals. The Summer Institute is a fantastic professional development opportunity which has given our UK teachers a whole host of ideas, tools and strategies – along with the confidence to use them in everyday lessons.”

Emma Wooldridge, from Christ Church C of E Primary School in Croydon, agreed: “The Discovery Education Summer Institute has given me a new lease of life for teaching! Not only did I learn new digital strategies to try with my class, but I made connections with other educators from all over the globe, from Canada to Egypt. I’m excited for the next year of teaching and looking forward to implementing some of the fantastic ideas and technology.”

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