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Saturday, 24 January 2015

#IPACALearn Going Google - A Year On - #BETT2015

Here at the BETT Show I have just completed my second of two presentations this week on the Google stand. My presentation discussed IPACA's story of going Google including the UK's first large-scale 1:1 deployment of Google Chromebooks.

See below for a copy of the presentation I have just shared -

You can find out more about IPACA's use of Google Chromebooks by watching the below -

Friday, 23 January 2015

21st Century school - Learning without boundaries - #BETT2015

Here at the BETT Show I have just completed my 'Secondary Live' presentation entitled '21st Century school - Learning without boundaries'.

At the Isle of Portland Aldridge Community Academy we’ve been looking at how we make learning better. Challenging ourselves to understand what makes a difference and what will give our learners the vital edge in their future lives. We always knew technology was essential but there are other things we knew we needed to look at.

Working with James Penny from our technology partner European Electronique we’ve come up with a new way of thinking about all the things that we think need considering when looking at creating a truly great learning environment. We’ve grouped these under the title of an Educational Digital Maturity Index – EDMI. This defines six areas where we think it is essential to think hard and ask questions about what you are doing. During our session at BETT today we explored the index in more detail and shared what we think the index really means in terms of education impact. See below for a copy of our presentation -

In review of the session, see below for the six shared areas with some questions for you to explore further with our colleagues -

High quality leaders are essential but how do leaders use technology? How do they encourage others to use technology? Is the use of technology fully embedded into their vision for the organisation? How does their vision for technology support enhanced outcomes?

High quality teachers are essential – Are teachers confident about using technology? Do they have technology embedded into their pedagogical practice? Do teachers share their great practices between each other? Do teachers use technology to teach and work across areas of knowledge?

Are your students ready? We often think of students as the master of technology but often they need as much support as everyone else. Are all students confident in using technology? Are all students able to access and use technology? Does the use of technology support students to perform better?

Is your curriculum digitally ready? Without a review of the curriculum technology can often not be fully exploited. Have leaders and teachers reviewed the curriculum to ensure that technology is being used effectively? Have curriculum activities been specifically designed to make effective use of what technology can offer? Will the curriculum take advantage of the opportunities for out of school learning? CPD is embedded here as a prerequisite of delivering great learning.

Is your technology Infrastructure ready? Has the infrastructure been designed to support the multiple personal devices that might be deployed? Has the connectivity been checked to see if it is sufficient? Has the active network infrastructure been configured to support the data it will need to process? Has the wireless infrastructure been designed to support the device strategy?

How will you use classroom spaces, buildings and your entire campus? Traditional classrooms and ICT suites support certain types of technology. What happens when you suddenly introduce mobile devices? Are traditional learning spaces suitable for mobile personal learning? Do classrooms have the spaces and facilities to make mobile learning successful?

#BETT2015 - Google Play for Education

Here at the BETT Show I have just completed my first of two presentations this week on the Google stand. My presentation discussed IPACA's Journey with Google Play for Education which has been officially launched this week at the BETT Show.

IPACA are proud to be one of the first schools outside North America to trial the Google Play for Education system and see it's benefits through a 1:1 Android Tablet scheme in our Year 6 classes.

See below for a copy of the presentation I have just shared -

#BETT2015 #TMTakeover Presentation

Here at the BETT Show I have just completed my first presentation in the form of a 'TeachMeet Takeover' on the Securly stand.

A "TeachMeet Takeover' is where one wonderful supplier donates their stand (Securly in this case) to teachers to share ideas. These ideas are not related to the stand that they are on and they should maintain the ethos of Teachmeet: the idea should be something that can be replicated by others in their classroom.

See below for a copy of the presentation I have just shared -

See below for a supporting video about our #IPACALearn Learner Led Design work -

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

#ETAGReport Published

Really excited to say that the ETAG (Education Technology Action Group) Report to which I have been a contributor to has been published today. You can download a copy of the report by clicking here - 

The Secretary of State for Education and Minister for Women and Equalities Nicky Morgan who opened the BETT Conference in the Excel Arena in London today, mentioned the report in her speech giving thanks to IPACA Patron Professor Heppell for his role in chairing ETAG.

The work we have been doing here at IPACA is embodied in the headlines of the report -

- No child should be left behind when it comes to connectivity, access needs to be high quality as well as safe. (We are leading with this at IPACA with super-fast connectivity as standard, we also operate the first take-home filtering policy of any school in Europe).

- Each agency involved in education should be asked to show how it is using technology to support innovation as well as how it is encouraging the adoption of successful practice. (We have a 'Researcher in Residence', Philip Wilkinson working with us three days a week from Bournemouth University. Philip's role is to evidence the innovation we are making and it's affects on the provision of learning to our young people).

- We need to start talking about technology as something that is ubiquitous and unexceptional, it is simply part of the learning entitlement. (This is our fundamental vision at IPACA).

Friday, 9 January 2015

Plan-Do-Review Computer Science

Young learners at the Isle of Portland Aldridge Community Academy have been pushing their own learning forward in Computer Science. The learners from the Portland Academy have been setting their own targets as a part of special 'Plan, Do, Review' approach to learning. The practice which includes the pupils using a range of digital devices such as PCs, Laptops, iPads and Chromebooks to support learning is proving really popular with pupils and staff alike.

Teacher and Leader of Southwell Campus at the Isle of Portland Aldridge Community Academy, Jackie Thomas explains how, "During plan-do-review, children are encouraged to take the initiative, solve problems, work with others and accomplish their goals'.

Academy Director for Change and Innovation, Gary Spracklen, explains how, "This is not about children sitting passively in rows waiting to be told what to learn. In following this process, we see the children realise that they can make things happen and that their choices and ideas are respected. This helps develop their self confidence and a sense of control and independence. It's been great to see children in this unit of work ask questions of themselves like 'What does HTML mean?', 'Who invented Google?' and 'What languages make a computer work?'. No question is too complex and learners are encouraged to use the resources in the room and beyond to support them.

Speaking about her Computer Science Plan-Do-Review work, Year 5 pupil Ellie said, 'I have learnt that we all need to work as a team. I thought I did well but struggled with some of it. Next time, because of this work, I will be more confident'. 

Plan-Do-Review — Structure - Plan-do-review is devoted to planning time (plan), work time (do), and recall time (review). At planning time children meet in small groups. Each child then decides what to do during work time and then shares this plan with the others in the group.

During ‘do’ work time children carry out their plans, alone and/or with others, and then clean up. At recall time, the last of the three-part sequence, children meet again with their planning-time group to share and discuss what they learnt during work time. 

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Chromebook Wallpaper

In the Google Admin console, you can configure policies for your organisation's Chrome devices according to who signs in. This includes replacing the default wallpaper with your own custom wallpaper. You can upload images in JPG format (.jpg or .jpeg files) up to a maximum size of 16 megabytes. Other file types are not supported.

Here at IPACA, Mr. Coelho has just put the following images together to use -

The above all support our new 'Behaviour for Learning' policy which is being launched at IPACA this week. Following the first image being used today, it was great to get the following email from a Year 11 student -
Hi sir, I don't know who changes the Chromebook wallpaper if its you or other IT Tech people I just wanted to say that the one you put up was very good and I was wondering if every month we could have a new inspirational picture on our Chromebooks, instead of the same one all the time.You might have to send out a email to ask if student will like this but I think that it would be great to have a inspirational picture or quote on our Chromebook screens that we will see at school.
I am pleased to say that Mr. Coelho is getting students in Art Club to design the next set of backgrounds and I look forward to sharing what they produce with you all soon.