Thanet 2: Launch Day

| January 4, 2010 | 0 Comments 

thanetjan4What a great start to the New Year: the opportunity to spend the first of three days working with colleagues from the Thanet 2 Partnesrship in Kent. Around 175 delegates from Priory Infants, Chilton Primary, Newington Primary, Upton Juniors, Ellington Infants, St Joseph’s Catholic Primary, Dame Janet Infants, Christ Church C of E Junior, St Ethelbert’s Catholic Primary, Bromstone Primary, St Mildred’s Infants, Newlands Primary, Dame Janet Jnr joined us at St Augustine’s centre in Westgate-on-Sea.

Thank you to Jenny Jones PEP headteacher for the Thanet 2 Local Children’s Services Partnership (LCSP) and all of her colleagues for a superb start to 2010.

Thank you, to, to Georgina Girling, Project Officer for the group, for organising huge elements of THIS project.

We look forward to coming back and working with you all again in three weeks time when we are spending two days working alongside children from schools in the area.

thanetjan4 025A BIG THANK YOU to Marie Knight from Newlands Primary for her input to today’s blog:

This is now the 4th time I have managed to creep my way into Tim Rylands presentations on Myst, and I am still just as inspired now as I was two years ago, when I saw his inspirational presentation at the Kent ICT Conference in 2008.
I was lucky enough to get hold of the game a few days later and introduced my Year 6 class to the wonders of Myst… on the last week of term…Oh yes, during Ofsted! Thank goodness they knew me well, and we managed to get an outstanding lesson observation. Thank you Wolves class!
Having moved to Year 3 the following year, I used Myst in a different way. I wanted my class to learn to talk to each other! We spent a term talking our way through the game, using Tim’s metaphor and similes descriptions. We discussed what we could hear and see. I have an air freshener water ball where the children choose the smell to perfume the room. They decided which essence suited each “world” we visited. They then knew when we were using Myst because they would walk into the classroom and recognise the smell. This was followed by excited squeals of “Are we doing Myst? We are doing Myst!” We recorded their ideas using Audacity and Windows Moviemaker. We also had a really good creative art session with good old fashioned paint, glue and glitter, designing our own doors and deciding what was behind them.
As the year progressed, the children’s confidence grew. They realised nothing scary was going to happen, and the children began to develop their writing and ICT skills. We have used the program from 2 Simple, 2 Publish, to make postcards home and to create ‘For sale’ descriptions. We also created instructional texts for some of the objects on the island.
The children felt like they had a purpose to their writing. They were keen to try using Cueprompter to support their oral presentation. One of the most rewarding moments was watching one of my higher readers, supporting another child who was having difficulty reading his cue by mouthing the words to him. The children then filmed their descriptions in front of the whiteboard with their screen shots behind them. We then had a film afternoon when the whole class watched their films, gave critical (but positive) responses to the films, and then decided on their favourite presentations giving reasons why. These favourite ones were then uploaded with permission onto our YouTube area.
I have NEVER finished the game, but this has never bothered the children, or me. What I have seen is a positive response to the game. I have children who will now talk to their partners. They listen to each other and are happy to share their ideas and steal good ideas for their own writing. They can use Myst to support the area of literacy we are studying such as instructional text and journalistic writing. Most importantly I have children who are keen to write. They think they are playing… I know they are learning.
Two years on, I am still inspired to use Myst with my children and encourage my colleagues to try it out. So here I am, happy to be sitting here again, with those I work with, thinking outside the box. Roll on 3 weeks time when I have the opportunity to see Tim in action with the children.
Marie Knight AST ICT.

Category: 1) Events and Training days

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