Rhondda – Oracy Into Writing – Some thoughts

| November 18, 2009 | 0 Comments 

rhondda 057I am a student in the third and final year of a primary teaching degree at Swansea Metropolitan University.

I became interested in using ICT to inspire children when I was presented with an assignment concerned with improving boys writing. I talked to a class of comprehensive school aged children about their most memorable and enjoyable writing lessons, to this came a unanimous response.. lessons with Mr Williams and Myst.

I was intrigued, a little dubious but began my research. I contacted Tim Rylands to ask for his advice he kindly invited me to his presentation in Rhondda Heritage Park.

On this wet and windy Wednesday, I navigated my way down the M4 through torrential rain and wild wind. I arrived, collected a hot coffee and found myself a suitable seat from which to listen.

Tim introduced the talk in a lively and hilarious manner engaging the audience by asking for suggestions for the holes in his walking stick aptly named ‘Mr Walker!’ His light hearted banter and continuous humour ideally suits him to a career on the stage!!

The introduction to Myst 3 mesmerised and captivated the audience. Tim encouraged us to use our senses to describe the virtual environment in which we found ourselves. Tim reminds us that it is not the resource alone that makes lessons successful; it is how we as teachers use it. Myst provides the opportunity to develop essential speaking and listening skills. Tim’s commentary of virtual walks through Myst landscapes enlightens us as to the endless educational possibilities. PowerPoint presentations showing children immersed in writing for enjoyment, stimulated by the mystery and intrigue that Myst provides is simply inspirational!

Tim’s fantastic delivery is rich in ideas to promote the diversity of genres, using drama and role play to support the teaching of writing. The benefits of which are clear from the writing produced and the faces of the children involved.

Tim left us in no doubt that Myst is an incredible stimulus for inspired writing. His success however, must be greatly attributed to his personality and his motivational delivery that could not fail to inspire.

rhondda 054The opportunity to play Myst mesmerised and frustrated all present!! Tim provided a detailed and informed presentation about the most effective ways to use the game to optimise teaching and learning. The diverse, stunning imagery generates questioning and communication opportunities and is laden with speaking and listening potential.

Following lunch, we reconvened to explore a myriad of fun, purposeful new ideas for using ICT in the classroom. Sarah demonstrated interesting and useful ways of using keeping PowerPoint interactive and alive.

At the end of an enjoyable day, I feel enthused, confident and inspired. Tim’s charisma, humour and love for life and teaching is an example I aspire to follow.

Thank you Tim and Sarah!! – Vicki Onions

Category: 1) Events and Training days

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