A blog for students on the FDLT and BALT courses at the University of Northampton

at Leicester and UN

August 19, 2020
by Jean
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More information about parking at Waterside

You will have read some information about parking at the Waterside Campus if you have chosen to be in the Northampton group.

You can read more about parking and travel to Waterside here

You may have found this page: student campus parking. On this page there is information about applying for a permit to park on campus. There are some criteria for you to read to find out if you can apply. The closing date for applications is August 30th 2020.

Student parking permit application, information and application here

car park screen

August 17, 2020
by Jean
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Curriculum documents

Throughout the FDLT and BALT courses you will often need to read and refer to curriculum documents. 

These are some of the key documents:

For Early Years:

This is a link to the page where you can access and download the Statutory framework for the early years.

This is the reference that you will use in assignments:

DfE (2019) Statutory framework for the early years. [online] Available from: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/596629/EYFS_STATUTORY_FRAMEWORK_2017.pdf [Accessed 15/07/2019]. 

For primary and secondary:

This is the link to the full national curriculum for all key stages and subjects. It is this document that you should use in assignments.

This is the reference that you will use in assignments:

DfE (2014) National Curriculum in England: framework for key stages 1 to 4. [online[ Available from: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/381344/Master_final_national_curriculum_28_Nov.pdf [Accessed: 15/07/2020].

It would be useful for you to save the relevant links, download the documents and read through the pages relevant to your age group.

You should also all read pages 1 to 13 of the national curriculum as this underlies the subject programmes of study. 

August 10, 2020
by Jean
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Introducing Padlet!

For new students to the FDLT and BALT courses:

Padlet is a digital tool that we often use for teaching. You do not need an account of your own to use it. When you are sent a link to a Padlet just click on it and you will be taken to a Padlet board with posts and links to useful information. 

Sometimes we will ask you to post on a Padlet. To do this you click on the pink plus sign at the bottom left hand corner of the screen. A box will open for you to type into. You can also upload a photo and add a link by using the icons at the bottom of the box.

On this Padlet you below you can explore the links but you cannot add to the Padlet yourself. We will be asking you to add to a Padlet later in August. Click below to open this Padlet and then click on each post to go to some useful and interesting websites.

Made with Padlet

 

August 3, 2020
by Jean
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Listening suggestions

As students about to start studying in Higher Education it is useful for you to know about people who work in the field of education. A useful way of beginning this is to listen to radio programmes such as The Educators. This is available on Radio 4 at here.

 

You might listen to the episode about mathematics educator, Jo Boaler and then try the episode about educational researcher, John Hattie and then just browse to listen to what takes your interest.

As you listen consider how what you are hearing relates to your own educational experience both as a pupil and as a student, and your professional experience in schools.

July 27, 2020
by Jean
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Preparing to study at university

As you begin to study in Higher Education you’ll find that there are lots of sources of support. The Skills Hub at the University of Northampton is one of these. When you have enrolled as a student you will be able to access all of the resources but until then you can access the content under Academic Skills, How to Study and How to Research. You can find the Skills Hub here.

You might also wish to buy a study skills book such as The Study Skills Handbook by Stella Cottrell. This is a useful book in your first year, but also has useful sections to use in the second and third years. There is a supporting website here. Having said this there are many useful study skills books so you could have a browse and choose one that you like the look of.

As you begin in the course you will find plenty of study skills support available to you through your tutors in taught sessions and resources and people available to you through the university face to face and online. 

 

 

July 20, 2020
by Jean
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Venue and parking details for FDLT and BALT students

The BALT groups start in week beginning 7th September and the FDLT groups start in week beginning 14th September, on your venue day. For each course and group day 1 will take place at Waterside.

FDLT Year 1

Tuesday: Devonshire Place, Leicester

Thursday: Waterside Campus, Northampton

FDLT Year 2

Monday: Devonshire Place, Leicester

Wednesday: Waterside Campus, Northampton

BALT

Tuesday: Waterside Campus Northampton.

Thursday: Devonshire Place, Leicester

Venue details:

LEICESTER

Devonshire Place, 78 London Road, LEICESTER, LE2 0RA

Parking: the car park is accessed via Prebend Street.

NORTHAMPTON

Waterside Campus, University Drive, NORTHAMPTON, NN15PH.

Parking: Sixfields Park and Ride

Open: All year round.

Location: Claret Car Park and the Saints Car Park, Edgar Mobbs Way, Sixfields, NN5 5JR.

Number of parking spaces: approximately 1500.

Open to: University staff, students and visitors. (Also open to NCC staff, different charges may apply).

Cost: park for free and ride the bus for £1 return.

Payment: pay on bus, contactless, Uno app or buy a monthly pass.

Frequency (peak time): every 10 minutes Monday – Friday, every 15 minutes on Saturday and 30 minutes on Sunday.

Route: west – east shuttle service including the rail station, town centre and Waterside. There is a route to link to St George’s Avenue that requires a change at Marefair (Sol Central pick up on the new 20 service (free intercampus bus) Monday – Friday).

​Opening hours: 6.00am – 10:30pm, Monday – Friday (no overnight stays).​

Full security: on-site security and CCTV system.

Ultramodern buses: luxurious interiors, free Wi-Fi, USB charging at every seat and low emissions.

Real time information: see when your next bus is going to arrive.

apple teacher modules

July 13, 2020
by Jean
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Learning to use digital tools 3: Apple Teacher

apple teacher logoMany of you will be using iPads to support learning in the classroom. As you use the iPad you and your pupils will quickly be able to work out how to use various tools as and when you need them. One of the great features of the iPad is the way you can use it intuitively and rapidly work out how to use it to support your own learning and the learning of your pupils. 

Another way of developing your skills is to complete the Apple Teacher course available through the Apple Teacher Learning Centre. You can access it here.

apple teacher modulesOnce you have used your Apple Teacher ID to sign into the site you can work your way through the iPad modules: iPad, Pages for iPad, Keynote for iPad, Numbers for iPad, iMovie for iPad, Garageband for iPad and creativity with iPad. Having worked your way through these modules and taken a test you can then display the Apple Teacher digital badge on your blog and email signature. In addition to the iPad learning there is also set of four modules with a focus on coding and Swift and a set focused on using the Mac.

The modules are user friendly and informative, based around digital books that you can download and return to. Alongside them are many other useful resources in the site that can take you further with using tools such as Clips and explore themes such as being creative and remote learning. 

If you have completed Apple Teacher let us know in the comments below. How has it supported your work in the classroom?

 

 

Google AR TL image

July 6, 2020
by Jean
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Learning to use digital tools 2: ThingLink

ThingLink is a digital tool available for all to use in a free and in a paid for version. The tools available through the free version are a great place to get started. Although it is available as an app it is also available online. You can access it here.

It is a tool that allows you to add tags to images and video. The tags can include text, audio, images / video and links to a wide range of other resources and tools. You can then share your ThingLink with users who can access all the materials from the one place. There are useful accessibility features that make it supportive for all users. ThingLinks can also be embedded into blogs and digital books made in BookCreator and added to Padlets.

screen shot from Microsoft course pageA useful way to get started is to complete the Creating Visual Learning Materials ThingLink course in the Microsoft Educator Center. This is a comprehensive introduction for the new user  but also contains information about recent changes that was helpful to me as a longtime user of ThingLink. The course contains the following:

Modules Overview – Each module has an interactive video ThingLink and helpful overview

  1. What is ThingLink?  
  2. Your ThingLink Account  
  3. Base Images and Videos  
  4. ThingLink Creation and Tag Types  
  5. Embedding Microsoft Tag Ideas  
  6. Accessibility and Publishing 
  7. Collaboration and Teams  
  8. Support and Resources – Followed by our Quiz!  

After you have completed the quiz you can download a digital badge to display on your blog or email signature. 

A recent example of a ThingLink I made is this one that introduces you to the AR features in Google.

If you join ThingLink and browse existing ThingLinks you will easily find inspiration for using this tool in school. There are so many examples across all age groups and subjects.

How might you use ThingLink in your practice? Share a link to any ThingLinks you make in the comments below.

June 30, 2020
by Jean
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Learning to use digital tools 1: Book Creator

book creator logoBookCreator is a digital tool available to all of us to use through Google Chrome. You can accesslist of book creator modules it here.

It is a tool that allows you to create digital books of your own incorporating a very wide range of media including text, images, video and digital items from other other sources. The accessibility features make BookCreator a tool that supports inclusion for the reader.

A useful way to get started is to work through the Book Creator Certified Author Level 1 activities. These provide a comprehensive and user friendly introduction to the tool. If you have not used BookCreator before this a great introduction. I have been using BookCreator for a while and I learned a lot too, especially about the range of accessibility features available to the writer and reader. 

You can see in the list on the right that each module is a short and focused introduction to an aspect of the tool. If you work your way through the items and complete a quiz you can gain a BookCreator level 1 certificate and a digital badge to display on your blog or email signature. 

I have made BookCreator books with pupils and students, often to share their work on a topic or area of study. More recently I have created digital text books for students to use as the basis of university sessions. Being able to choose to have the text read them was supportive for some students who accessed the books. 

This is a digital book to support a session of developing vocabulary when supporting learning in English and across the curriculum. It is written for university students in the first year of their degree. It was especially useful to be able to share information in this way when most of our study and learning took place online recently.

I also made a more practical book based around different ways of using technology in supporting learning in and teaching English. This book allowed me to collect together and share a range of other digital tools that can be used in English lessons. 

 

How might you use BookCreator in your practice? Share a link to any books you make in the comments below!

 

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