ICT For Education Magazine Conference, Swansea

| December 7, 2011 | 22 Comments 

Two further keynote sessions at the ICT For Education Magazine Conference, at The Liberty Stadium, at Swansea.

In our first session, at the almost unearthly hour of 08:15, was still incredibly well attended, despite it feeling like “Badger 0’clock” or “Milking Time past midnight” We presented some accessible tools and ideas for raising the levels of creativity, writing, speaking and listening among children of all ages. We described the powerful effect of using games, Web2 tools, software, handheld devices and more to model a way of teaching that focuses on quality learning, rather than the latest gadget. We also investigated how virtual worlds, with their stunning landscapes, peaceful characters and realistic challenges, can be used across subject areas, abilities and age ranges to deliver remarkable effects.

Matt Hogan, head of ICT, Eaton Bank School, led another ICT Reviews Live!

Matt led another ICT Reviews Live!, an independent product review session that put products to the test and gave insight into their capabilities.

We got the chance to watch reviews, comment on product content, consider underlying technologies, discuss ease of use and share opinions on how suppliers could develop products and services to meet the needs of teachers and schools.

Simon Pridham, headteacher, Casllwchwr Primary School and Ty Golding, acting headteacher, Barry Island Primary School, delivered a session entitled ICT in the classroom: Mobile learning devices.

Simon became deputy headteacher at Casllwchwr Primary School in 2005 and was appointed headteacher in July 2009 and led the school through a successful  ESTYN inspection in May 2010. He has embraced modern technology to enhance the curriculum at Casllwchwr Primary School.

Ty Golding has worked at Barry Island Primary School in 2005, became deputy headteacher in 2008 and this year took on the role of acting headteacher.

We have been fortunate to spend a superb day at Barry Island Primary School, in which we spent some great time developing the use of iPads and iPods in creative ways, across the curriculum.

Simon and Ty looked at the impact mobile learning devices can have on teaching and learning, covering their journey from an excellent ESTYN inspection to best practice in the classroom. They described not only the progress they have made so far, but also their vision of how they will use mobile learning devices over the next three years.

Gail McAlister, headteacher, Croeserw Primary School, Making a difference through ICT development

Croeserw Primary School is situated in the most deprived ward in Neath Port Talbot, with 58% of children entitled to free school meals. End of Key Stage 1 and 2 results have generally been below the average of other schools in Neath Port Talbot and throughout Wales. In the school’s last inspection in 2008, ICT was identified as a shortcoming. Gail will describe the journey the school has made over the past two years in terms of ICT development and the impact it has had on the school

Gail has been teaching since 1981 and took up the headship of Croeserw Primary School in January 2010. She is passionate about education and the difference it can make to a child’s life. There have been many changes in Croeserw school. One of the great successes has been the development of ICT and the impact it has had on improving standards in literacy and numeracy throughout the school. Gail notes gaining the ICT Mark in record time as a high point in her career to date.

Anne Stoker, education development officer, Baglan education and training centre, looked at the impact of ICT on learning – and whether it can it be measured?

Schools and local authorities invest heavily in ICT, but how can we be sure this investment is having an impact on learning? Can impact be measured? Anne will explore ways in which schools can begin to measure the impact ICT has on learning and pupil outcomes.

Anne was seconded to the Welsh Government where she was part of the ICT strategy team with responsibilities for e-safety and monitoring the impact of the Self Review Framework on schools. Anne is now responsible for developing ICT strategy for all schools and has a focus on teaching and learning.

Ian Morgan, deputy director, NGfL Cymru, gave us A View From The Top – NGfL Cymru. Ian’s presentation looked at the education system in Wales and how NGfL Cymru underpins the system through the development of websites and resources that support key policies, including Developing Thinking and the School Effectiveness Framework, and professional development through the sharing of educationally focussed good practice and tools.

Ian has spent the past 15 years supporting the use of ICT in teaching and learning, and for the past eight and a half years has been the deputy director of NGfL Cymru. Previously, Ian was a principal education officer in Caerphilly local education authority with responsibility for all aspects of ICT across the education and leisure directorate, including the local education authority, schools, libraries and adult education.

Stewart Davies, head of ICT, Sandfields Comprehensive School, investigated ICT in the classroom and making the most of students’ ICT skills

In a recent inspection, Sandfields Comprehensive School was graded as excellent and ESTYN reported the skilful use made of information and communications technology to support learning. Stewart described how ICT is used to support teaching and learning, and how the school has improved the consistency of approach of teaching staff to ensure that pupils’ ICT skills are being used effectively to improve standards.

Melanie Blount, field development officer coordinator, NGfL Cymru, discussed how to develop thinking and enhance literacy and numeracy in the primary curriculum

Melanie worked for a number of years as a teacher in Denbighshire before joining NGfL Cymru. She has worked with local education authorities across Wales on projects and resources covering the primary age range. Melanie understands the need to engage young children with vibrant, stimulating activities that fire their imagination and encourage a passion for learning.

Dafydd Watcyn Williams, director, NGfL Cymru, discussed the flexibility of resources at secondary level, including the ability to desegregate and download content into a number of delivery mediums for use in the classroom.

Dafydd was a secondary school teacher and head of department before he took up a role as an ICT advisory teacher with Gwynedd local education authority. He was then appointed as a secondary advisor with Cynnal, supporting ICT in Gwynedd and Anglesey schools, and became director at NGfL Cymru in 2002.

Karen Ford, field development, officer coordinator, NGfL Cymru, delivered a session with a focus on teaching and learning resources from NGfL Cymru for the further education/post-16 sector.

As a field development officer coordinator for NGfL Cymru, Karen has responsibility for the further education/post-16 sector. Previously, she was e-learning development manager for the Welsh Assembly Government working in the Department for Children, Education, Lifelong Learning and Skills. Karen has also worked for Becta, coordinating implementation of National Learning Network resources in England and Wales, and has been a lecturer in office administration, key skills and office technology.

We ended the day with sixty free web tools in sixty minutes! a rocket ride through a newly explored galaxy of mostly free, web tools and more. While pressures on educators can push enjoyment, inspiration, creativity and fun out of the classroom, teachers recognise the need to inspire young people and fire their imaginations, enhance their creativity and confidence, encourage resourcefulness through challenge and motivate a love of learning for life. We lead an exploration through a huge and accessible range of ways to engage and motivate students of all ages and abilities, pointing out essential elements for quality learning experiences and how these elements can have a massive impact on standards, achievement and enjoyment.

Category: 1) Events and Training days

Comments (22)

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  1. Amy Tottle says:

    As a student all of the websites were helpful, especially “Qoute Pad”, I will definitely be using the majority of the websites during my second teaching practise.
    Thank you very much, it’s very much appreciated

  2. Aaron Shakeshaft says:

    I would like to thank you for providing the very helpful resources shown in this conference. I am about to start my second year teaching placment in the foundation phase and most of the resources shown will come in extremely helpful especially the “TagGalaxy”.
    Thank you very much, Aaron.

  3. Matthew Wain says:

    Great insight in to uses of ICT that I had no idea existed before. Provided many useful and free programmes that will come useful to me now as a student and later on in my career. Many thanks to Tim for a great talk.

  4. Richard Williams says:

    Inspirational ideas shared today. I can’t wait to get back and share with staff. fantastic!

  5. Beth Rees says:

    It was a pleasure to finally see Tim in action. I was introduced to the land of Myst on my first year teaching practice and it was extremely helpful to see additional ways that ICT can be used effectively and for a purpose in lessons. As a trainee teacher I also find this website helpful because it draws attention to useful and innovative ICT tools. A quick and easy use of my time! Thanks for a high quality free event.

  6. Richard Davies says:

    Fantastic day. Tim was as inspirational as ever. Came away with my head flooded with ideas. Oh to decide which one to share with staff first…

  7. Paul Davies says:

    Thought provoking day… could you give us the url again for the bit.ly site as some of the sound editing suggestions dont seem to be on the gamesforlearning page.


  8. LJ says:

    Wow!!!! Inspirational!!

  9. Lee Burnell says:

    Superb day! Filled with inspirational tips, tools and web ideas.
    Tag galaxy is out of this world!!! 🙂

    Many thanks Tim, your passion is phenomenally contagious.

  10. Mandy Thomas says:

    Really enjoyed today and particularly liked the emphasis on ICT to enhance, develop and extend communication skills. Having a difficult time this evening trying to decide which tool to use first. Thank you.

  11. Caz Clark says:

    Massive THANK YOU for today. Masses to think about and all free!

  12. Christine Edwards says:

    What an inspirational day! Went skydiving, did some cooking, visited lots of different places; including SPACE! Fantastic! Can’t wait to take the credit for all the wonderful expensive, I mean FREE resources. Thanks again.

  13. Tim says:

    What a gorgeous summary! Glad you enjoyed it. Have fun at school too. 😀

  14. Tim says:

    Thanks Caz. Enjoy your travels at school.

  15. Tim says:

    Take it slowly and one by one and enjoy what you choose Mandy. 😀

  16. Tim says:

    Thanks Lee
    Hope you find it useful

  17. Tim says:

    Have fun! 😀

  18. Tim says:

    Hi Paul. I have sent you the links by email. Have fun!

  19. Tim says:

    How about a mash up of ALL OF THEM AT THE SAME TIME 😀
    Have fun and take your time

  20. Tim says:

    Thanks for this Beth (and I only mentioned Mysty bits for about 60 seconds too :-D)
    Enjoy what you use

  21. Gwawr Williams says:

    Mind-blowing day yesterday! Well worth the 4 hour drive to Swansea to finally see you live in action! Can you please email the links again since I was so disappointed when they did not open.
    Thank you for so many language ideas. Diolch!

  22. Sarah says:

    Thank you, Gwawr. I have sent you the links by email. Have fun!

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