Y1 Blog

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Session 8

Posted by Scott on April 2, 2013

In our final ICT session this year we focused on eSafety and came up with rules that children should follow when they blog online. More and more children are blogging in schools as it gives them the opportunity to reach a wide range of audiences and show off the sort of work that they can produce. However, before they go off blogging it is important to establish a set of guidelines that they should follow in order to keep them safe online. In my group we came up with these rules that should be followed.

1. Never give out personal details such as your address or telephone number
2. Only use your first name when blogging
3. Use appropriate language
4. Values others opinions even if they are different to your own
5. It is good to use constructive criticism in order to help others improve their work

Today marks the end of my blogging experience ūüôĀ
It has been nice to do an assessed piece of work that isn’t in an essay format! I also think that blogging after each session has really helped with the workload as the assignment is split down into manageable chunks. Over the 8 sessions I feel as though my ICT skills have really developed and I now know a number of resources that are great to use with children. As I move into placement 1b, I now have lots of knowledge that I can share with the children about ICT and feel confident in using and teaching it. Goodbye.

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Session 7 Reading

Posted by Scott on April 1, 2013

When doing some further reading this week, I saw a video on the reading list that I thought looked interesting. This short video showed a talk being given by Ali Carr-Chellman all about how games should be used in the classroom to re-engage boys in learning. She believes that boys lack motivation when approaching many subjects and that this is due to the lack of interest that boys have in certain lessons and also comments on the lack of stimulating material used. She says that boys can become more invested in lesson when video games are used to teach, as well as provide enjoyment.

I also looked at a post by Mr Andrews which looked at how you could raise boys standards in writing by using iPad’s for gaming. He used a game on the iPad called ‘Bike Baron’ and the children had to complete levels by driving on a motorbike through loops and going over jumps. In groups, children then had to write reports about the game that they had played and this idea was adapted lesson by lesson to get children to write to instruct, describe etc. He found that this really improved not only the quality of boys writing, but also improved their enthusiasm to write. Therefore it would be beneficial to see if you could adapt his idea to suit the needs of your classroom. I really enjoyed his article!

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Session 7

Posted by Scott on April 1, 2013

This session was a follow on from last week’s seminar. We were introduced to more programs that can be used to create games with children in the classroom. The first program we were shown was Kodu. Just like when we were first shown Scratch, Kodu seemed very confusing with all of its controls and commands. It would take a long time to be fully confident with these elements and children may too feel daunted by this. If you were to use this program with a class I think that it would be necessary to gradually introduce new controls each lesson so that the class can gradually build upon their knowledge. I decided that I would play around with Kodu at another date.

We decided to create our game on Purple Mash as my group felt that it looked simpler to use and was more child friendly. The game was created in the 2DIY3D section of Purple Mash. This is the screen that you are given to begin the creation of your game.

The green apples (which you had to collect) and the red bad guys (which you had to avoid) could be dragged into the position on the plan of your game. You then select the ‘wall’ tool which you creates a maze around your apples and bad guys. Most of your game is then complete. What I really liked was that you can then customise the game by adding your own pictures in, so that you can collect or avoid whatever you want. In our game we decided to collect Kangaroos to rescue them from poachers. We also thought you could link this into science when talking about endangered species and hunting.

Once the game has been created, the children can have fun playing it. A number of people in the group tried out our game and they all said that they liked it. I think this is a great program to use with children as it doesn’t take long to become familiar with the controls and it is good fun to make!

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Session 6 Reading

Posted by Scott on March 31, 2013

I spent time doing some reading after the session and found a computer games and learning handbook. It gives lots of information about how games can be used in children’s learning and how this idea can be developed. The handbook also goes into detail about games are used in a learning context within families and look that attributes that lead to learning. This is a very useful resource and I would recommend it to those who want to find out more about how games can be used in children’s learning.

I also read an article called ‘The Consolarium’ on Learning and Teaching Scotland. It states how children should no longer be only consumers of games – but creator of games with a game design initiative. The Consolarium offers teachers the opportunity to visit and investigate different types of game design technology that can be used in schools. Teachers can collaborate and share ideas as well as loaning out equipment such as Xbox’s and Playstation’s to enhance learning in schools. This really surprised me as I didn’t realise that these consoles were used in schools, let alone used to enhance learning!

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Session 6

Posted by Scott on March 12, 2013

In todays session we learnt all about how to make simple computer games and how these can be used to help in the classroom. The program that we used to make these games was Scratch. When first presented with this program i thought that i would never be able to work the program due to the large number of tools and options there are available. I think it would take some time to be 100% confident with the program and to become familiar with all of its tools and options.

We were given a set of instructions to follow so that we could create a game. These were really easy to follow and understand and i had finished my game within about 30 minutes. You can play my game below. The aim is to click on the witches as many times as you can within the time limit. There are 2 witches and these travel at different speeds and are at different heights. Good luck!



Learn more about this project

I think children would be really excited to do this activity and they would have lots of fun doing it. I think that as soon as you mentioned the task at the beginning of the lesson, the children would be instantly hooked and fully engaged with the activity. In the upcoming curriculum, computer programming is going to become more important so tasks like this are a great way to introduce children to programming.

During the session i had instructions to follow but i think that if i didnt have instructions i wouldnt have a clue what to do. This is a potential problem that children could have too so it is important to slowly introduce new features of the program so that children can gradually build up their knowledge and skills. I think that they would get a large amount of self satisfaction from finishing creating a game so this would be a very worthwhile activity.

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Session 5

Posted by Scott on March 6, 2013

In this session we looked at ways of presenting data and how we can use this is a classroom. We learnt lots about infographics which are similar to posters. You can use them to present information about any subject so you could use them in pretty much all subjects in the classroom. You can create infographs on each of the following:  http://piktochart.com/, http://infogr.am/ or http://visual.ly/.

I decided to create my infographic on piktochart as i liked how it gave you a load of templates that you could easily adapt. This would be good for children because they wont have to waste half of a lesson sorting out the layout and creating borders, pictures and textboxes. Also, when they have finished creating their infographic it is really easy to print and and use for informative displays.

I created an infographic about plants and functions of different parts of the plant. It took a while to become familiar with all of the tools on the program but once you had, you realised how easy the program was to use. The biggest trouble i had was figuring out how to import pictures into my infographic but once I found out how to, it was easy. Overall, i would say that this is a great tool to link ICT in with other subjects in schools and that children would have some fun using it. Look at my infographic below!

This was a fun session and was topped off by finding out that another groups infographic was made about me. I will get Rich and Reece back!



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Session 4

Posted by Scott on February 26, 2013

In this session we explored more new programs that can be used in the classroom. The program my group used was called StoryJumper. On many of these programs you could create your own picture books that can be put on the IWB in classrooms. This can be really useful if you wanted to create a book relating to a topic that you were doing in another subject. In many of these programs you can write your own text and add your own pictures. You can even upload a picture you have taken and put that into the story. So you could crop your face and add it to the body of a pirate if you wanted. If you wanted to you could even upload the faces of some of the children in your class and make them part of the story. Im sure this would be really exciting for them and really get them engaged.

My group wanted to aim the resource we created at reception/nursery classes. We decided to create a tool for learning the alphabet. We then related an object/food/animal to that letter eg. A for Apple. The resource can be found at http://www.storyjumper.com/book/index/8835292/Alphabet-Fun . This could be used as a regular resource to show the children at some stage during the day so that they become more familiar with the alphabet and can gain confidence in using it. The object presented with the letter could later be used as a guide so that eventually the children could come up with their own suggestions that could be added to the program. It is a resource that you can constantly change and adapt depending on your classes knowledge. It is hoped that over time word banks for each letter could be established to further aid the children. These programs are a great tool (and resources are quite easy to make) that can be used in lots of different situations to develop and support childrens learning.

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Session 3 Blog

Posted by Scott on February 19, 2013

In today’s session we looked at how animation works and how it can be used in the classroom. We had to create a backdrop and select characters that would be used in a small video clip. We set up a camera to the computer so that it took a picture whenever we wanted it to. To create the video we had to slightly move the scene each time and then take a photo. When all of these pictures were run together the scene moved and a short video clip had been created. You could then transfer this into Windows Movie Maker to create effects to alter the clip and to add a sound track. This can be a great activity to do with children and can be used in most areas of the curriculum.¬†For example, in History you could get the children to create an animation about¬†a topic like the Egyptians. This can reinforce understanding and¬†it is also really good fun! Often when children do an activity like this, it sticks in their mind more, so they are more likely to remember details about that topic.

There may be a few issues that the children have when creating their own animations. It is important that they keep the camera in the same position all the time so that the images flow together better. Another issue that they may have is that they may knock over some of the models. This could get very frustrating as they would have to keep on setting up their scene exactly as it was before. They also need to be aware that the movement of models needs to be very slight, to make the effect of the final animation better. They need to know that lots and lots of photos need to be taken.


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Session 2

Posted by Scott on February 14, 2013


In this weeks session were found out lots about Interactive Whiteboard (IWB) and¬†discovered resources that we can use on it. We were all given the opportunity to¬†have a¬†go on the IWB and investigate what it can do. We investigated different styles of writitng you¬†can use and¬†the varying styles of pens that you can write with.¬†We also looked at the images you can add¬†to the whiteboard and¬†found out how to callibrate the board. One big advantage of using IWB’s over traditional whiteboards and blackboards is that you can save documents and then¬†open them again in a matter of seconds. This saves a lot of time so lends more time for the children to learn.

As well as looking at what the IWB can do, we also looked at, and created,¬†resources that could potentially be used in schools. A number of really good resources can be found on http://www.teacherled.com/all-interactive-whiteboard-resources/. This gives a wide range of resources that are ready to use in schools. Click on the link below to have a look at a short resource that¬†I created. This can be easily altered into a quiz for any subject so could be used as a plenary at the end of sessions. As a result of this session I now know lots more about what¬†IWB’s can do and am aware of resources that can be used on them.

ict blog week 2 activity









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Y1 Blog 1

Posted by Scott on February 7, 2013

Hi, Im Scott ūüôā

Im in the first year of my BA Primary Education degree.  I have a passion for football and am a huge Tottenham Hotspur fan. I go to watch them as often as i can. I also have a keen interest in music and MMA.

I cant remember much about ICT when i was at primary school but remember regularly using powerpoint to create presentations about science. I also used paint many times to scribble out different pictures. During secondary school, the use of ICT became more important. All final copies of work were expected to be word processed and the use of programs such as publisher, excel and powerpoint became more frequent. I use ICT all the time for leisure and keep up to date with football news on social networking sites such as twitter.

In the last year when I have been working in Primary Schools, I have noticed that ICT is playing more and more of a role in primary education. Many schools now use iPads and laptops and when on school experience 1A, Year 1 children were being introduced to programs such as word and paint. As the use of technology becomes more important in schools, it is vital that I understand as much as possible so that I can pass on this knowledge to children.

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