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Thursday
Nov272014

5 Tips about reporting to parents

CommunicationYou may not always think so after a long and gruelling parents' evening, but parents are your friends! By keeping them well-informed of their child's progress, you not only keep them happy but also may be able to enlist their assistance.

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Wednesday
Nov262014

My Big Data Infographic

My Big Data InfographicI’ve been working on a long-ish article about big data for my newsletter, Digital Education. To give you a hint of some of my misgivings, here is a diagram I prepared to illustrate some of my points.

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Wednesday
Nov262014

Why can’t assessment be like feedback in eBay?

P1030702.JPGCan eBay teach us anything about assessment? At the Naace 2009 conference, John Davitt made an interesting point. As I recall, he said that when he started selling stuff on eBay he received more feedback on his performance than he’d ever seen in a school.

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Tuesday
Nov252014

3 reasons your kids are bored in Computing lessons, and 9 solutions

Day 2 - BoringAre your students yawning, checking their email, launching paper aeroplanes in your lessons? Perhaps you’re making one of these mistakes.

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Monday
Nov242014

Whiteboards: not dead yet

Getting Ready for OLED Technology - A Small Collage of Interactive Wall Applications on Our Smart Boards at the Interactive Interactive Show and Open Houses - Sheridan Interactive Multimedia One Year Post Grad College in OakvilleI heard an interesting snippet from Mike Cladingbowl, National Director at Ofsted, recently. He said that when interactive whiteboards were first introduced, Ofsted inspectors saw an increase in “chalk and talk”. Hardly surprising, because interactive whiteboards made chalk and talk, ie teaching from the front, easier.

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Sunday
Nov232014

Computing and ICT vocabulary

Vocabulary - Words Are ImportantTrawling through the articles published on my original website, I came across this one about vocabulary. Happily, the “new” publication it refers to is still available. Incidentally, I’m a great believer in paying attention to vocabulary and the correct use of correct terminology, so at the end of this “reprint” I’ve inserted a couple of references to other articles I’ve penned on this subject. The original article was published in 2008, and is shown in a different font, below.

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Friday
Nov212014

The art of execution

Stream of ConsciousnessA big problem which faces all organisations is actually getting things done. So, if you are an ed tech leader, what can you do about it in your school or department? Here are 5 key actions to take.

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Wednesday
Nov192014

Ideas for the computing curriculum: #4 Fun and pointless? Why not?

ideaIn this series I’m going to be making some suggestions, putting out some ideas. These are based on presentations I’ve given. I can think of how these ideas, or their implications, might be applied in the classroom. However, I think it better if I stand back and let you do that part of the work!

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Tuesday
Nov182014

Coming soon

I’m working on the next edition of Digital Education, and it contains some really great articles. For example, Mel Thompson asks whether philosophy should influence educational policy-making, which may seem a bit outré but, surprisingly enough, there is much that advocates of “computational thinking” would agree with I think.

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Friday
Nov142014

Don’t say it with Tweets

Happy New YearNow that the Christmas card season is almost upon us, I thought this item from a few months ago might be appropriate. I received a press release back in May (I'm slightly behind with my emails) which states that people prefer receiving handwritten 'thank you' cards rather than a quick tweet or text message.

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Thursday
Nov132014

The view from here... New Zealand, By Derek Wenmoth

Derek WenmothDerek Wemoth, the Director of CORE Education in New Zealand, tells us what's going on in his part of the world.

As the school year has not long started in the Northern Hemisphere, we’re looking ahead to the final term here in New Zealand, with summer on the horizon, along with exams and the usual end of year events.

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Wednesday
Nov122014

Why school is still relevant in the age of technology

I find myself becoming increasingly irritated by people who say that we no longer need schools. The “argument”, if I can so dignify their pronouncements, seem to consist of the “logic” (ditto) that kids have lots of access to technology, and they can teach themselves how to use it, and therefore schools, and by extension teachers, are redundant.

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Tuesday
Nov112014

26 + Tips for getting the most from your interactive whiteboards

IWB Guide Cover (tilted)To borrow from Mark Twain, reports of the death of the interactive whiteboard have been exaggerated. Despite often being used ineffectively or even badly, it still has much to offer.

I’ve written a brief guide to making the most of your interactive whiteboard which I’ve called, logically enough, Making the most of your interactive whiteboard. Originally, this was in response to a request I received while teaching on a teacher-training course recently.

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Monday
Nov102014

Why should new teachers use social media?

It seems to me that the sense of belonging to an intellectual  community is becoming less apparent in the staffroom, because of the need for schools to deliver on the latest half-baked, ill thought-out “initiative”

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Friday
Nov072014

Schools’ approach to assessment without Levels

Assessment InfographicWhen Michael Gove told everyone that Levels were not fit for purpose, so we don’t have to use them, we were given a great opportunity to rethink how we assess students and how to report our judgements. Unfortunately, I have had the distinct impression that many of us were finding it hard to do so. It seems that I was not imagining it.

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